Industry moots contract farming to tap agri crops

However, people in the industry believe that this is being underutilised.
Spotting potential in the sector, and the need for its sustenance for development of several sunshine industries, industry bodies have approached the government with suggestions and proposals to improve the productivity of the sector.
Taking inspiration from State government’s wine policy, Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce & Industry’s (Ficci) Karnataka chapter — has proposed a contract farming policy  following its success in Haryana and Punjab. However, the government is yet to respond.

Ficci Karnataka State Council Chairman Sajan Poovayya said Ficci along with other chambers had proposed about six months ago the contract farming policy, but got no response. The policy, he said would help the government get added income from agriculture sector, help farmers sustain themselves and also give the much needed boost to the processing industry. If the State agrees, the draft would include guidelines that will allow framers to sign contracts with buyers/corporates, while still having complete control over the land. It will only require farmers to supply stipulated quantity of their crop to the buyer for a stipulated number of years.

Procurement price
On the flipside, he said “we have proposed to include a clause wherein minimum procurement price is fixed, which the buyer will pay regardless of procuring the crop, thereby giving relief to the farmer in the worse case.”
The chamber has proposed the State to identify various locations such as North Karnataka for chillies, Kodagu for oranges, and so on and capitalise on specific products through supplies to specific industries and implement the policy.
“This we believe, will help the farmers to become sustainable in 1-5 years, and they will become profitable in 5-10 years,” he said, adding that the lack of such a policy is leading to a lot of potential buyers importing raw materials. The chamber has held talks with a few companies and is confident of getting buyers if the policy is in place.

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