'Water conservation in coffee growing areas should get priority'

'Water conservation in coffee growing areas should get priority'

Proposal on irrigation to be submitted to govt: Coffee Board prez

Coffee Board president M S Boje Gowda said a proposal to lay emphasis on irrigation in coffee growing areas will be submitted to the Union government shortly.

He was speaking at a workshop on ‘Opportunities for Diversification in Coffee Plantations’ organised by the Coffee Board and Central Coffee Research Institute on Saturday.

Recharge groundwater
“There is acute shortage of water in coffee growing areas. There is a need to give priority for conservation of water through percolation pits and lakes. There is a need to take measures to recharge the groundwater. The issue has been discussed by the members of Coffee Board. A proposal will be submitted to the Centre to recharge the groundwater table in the coffee growing areas,” he said.

Coffee prices have seen fluctuations in the market. The planters are in distress as the district reeling under drought-like situation for the last three years. There is a need to give priority for reforms in coffee cultivation.The production of coffee should be increased in the country, he said.

‘Research needed’
Coffee Board member Udaykumar Hegde said research should be conducted on coffee cultivation. The Centre wants to double the coffee production by 2022. Bhadra zone is suitable for Robasta coffee cultivation. The scientists should find a solution to the diseases affecting coffee and they should guide the planters on mixed cropping, he said. 

Member K K Manukumar said that lemon is cultivated as a mixed crop with coffee in Andhra Pradesh. The scientiests should guide the farmers on such mixed crop, he felt.