Berry borer disease a nightmare for coffee planters

Berry borer disease a nightmare for coffee planters

Arabica coffee plant leaves have started withering in Mudigere taluk

At a time, when coffee harvest is completed, Coffee berry borer disease is causing nightmare to Arabica coffee growers in Mudigere taluk. With this, there seems to be no end to the problems of coffee planters in Chikmagalur district.

The fall in price few years ago, loss of crop following heavy rain and the extensive damage caused by the berry-borer to the Arabica variety have worried the coffee growers.

The coffee plantations in Chikkhalla, Makonahalli, Bettadamane, Devarunda, Bairapura and Guthi have been affected with berry borer disease. The leaves of coffee plants have started withering and drying. Arabica is grown on 45,000 acre land in Mudigere taluk.

“We have taken care of these plants for the last 10 years. Now, it has started dying right in front of our eyes. Several farmers had cleared Arabica plants to grow Robasta in their estates. However, most of the growers prefer Arabica for increase in yield and good price it fetches in the market,” said growers. 

The berry borer has again started to spread rampantly and this has  added to the problems of the growers as this has caused significant crop and capital loss. An affected plant can destroy the entire plants in estates as the disease spreads. If the scientists fails to check disease from spreading, Arabica plantations may disappear in the taluk, said growers. 

“Heavy rain causes berry borer disease. By the time, the plants are ready for yield, the disease makes the plants seedless with the worms eating the seeds. The worms double in few days and are capable of destroying the whole yield in the estates,” said growers. Grower Dhananjay said “scientists from Krishi Vigyan Kendra should come to the rescue of the coffee growers.”

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