Dip in coffee, cardamom and pepper yields worry growers

Dip in coffee, cardamom and pepper yields worry growers

A coffee plantation affected by heavy landslides on Madikeri-Somwarpet Road.

Growers who underwent a huge turmoil due to nature's fury in Kodagu have experienced another big blow with the yields coming down drastically.

All commercial crops yields including coffee, pepper and cardamom have seen a big dip.

During the period between June and August, coffee plants and pepper vines were affected by the rot disease. Around 4,500 acres of coffee plantations were lost due to landslides.

Crop loss

Officials say that 50% of the yield is feared to be lost in paddy as fields in an area of 1,000 hectares were filled in slush.

Unripe coffee fruits withered due to increase in the humidity level. This has seriously affected the yield. Farmers fear a huge crop loss as the limited harvest could not even compensate the expenses made towards cultivation.

Growers have started harvesting Arebica coffee in Somwarpet, Kodlipet and Shanivarasanthe regions.

In Southern Kodagu, the Robusta coffee is expected to be ready for harvest in January. However, both varieties of coffee have provided less yield this time.

Grower Nanda from Cheyyandane said, "Pepper vines have also been affected by disease. The vines have turned brown in colour as they were submerged for weeks during the floods."

Insufficient package

Raitha Sangha leader Subbaiah said that the government has announced a package of Rs 546 crore for Kodagu, Hassan, Chikkamagaluru, Dakshina Kannada and Udupi, all put together.

"The amount is not sufficient for Kodagu as the loss has been immense. There is a need for a separate crop compensation package for Kodagu," he added.

A rehabilitation officer said that the plan towards compensating the farmers who have lost their lands has not been finalized yet.