CM promises boost to coffee sector

CM promises boost to coffee sector

Chief Minister Siddaramaiah, on Thursday, said Karnataka State Pollution Control Board (KSPCB) has been askeed to ensure coffee pulping activity, currently under red category (high pollution potential units) in the State, be brought under orange category (moderate pollution potential units).

Inaugurating the India International Coffee Festival- 2014, he said the chief secretary would take up the issue with KSPCB to align its norms with that of Central Pollution Control Board.
“This is being done so that Karnataka growers are not at a disadvantage when compared to their counterparts in other coffee growing states,” he said.  
Expressing concern over risk faced by coffee cultivators owing to climatic change, Siddaramaiah said the State would extend support under Rainfall Insurance Scheme to mitigate risk of loss and bear 25 per cent premium in respect of small growers over the Centre’s share of 50 per cent.  
Coffee Board Chairman Jawaid Akthar said stagnation in production and steep fall in prices have been major concerns. “If we do not improve productivity of existing holdings, it will be difficult to sustain coffee cultivation with increasing costs and uncertain prices. There is need to take re-plantation programme on top priority,” he said. The board, he said, has proposed setting up separate department of extension headed by a director to strengthen transfer of technology programme.  Pointing out productivity has been stagnant for past ten years and cost had been low globally, Department of Commerce Additional Secretary J S Deepak exhorted all stakeholders to work together.

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