Many progressive farmers and environmentalists have been calling for a ban on the cultivation of ginger, at least for a few years, given the crop’s impact on soil fertility and groundwater levels in the district. Office-bearers of farmers’ groups say farmers are ready to give up ginger cultivation in the interest of the environment and soil.Farmers in Hassan began ginger cultivation in the latter part of the last decade. Following a ban on it in Kerala, many farmers from there came to Hassan, among other districts of Karnataka, and took land on lease to grow ginger. Gradually, native farmers began growing the crop too.A.B. Sanjay, Deputy Director of the Horticulture Department, says, “Ginger is an undersoil crop and extracts nutrients and moisture directly from the soil. Soil fertility is the immediate casualty of ginger cultivation.”
Source: Call for ban on ginger production – The Hindu
At a time when arecanut growers are reeling owing to slump in the price of the produce and decline in the yield due to drought, the Union government’s decision to keep arecanut out of the purview of the Pradhan Mantri Krishi Sinchayee Yojana (PMKSY) has come as a bolt from the blue.The crop is grown in around 50,000 hectares in the district. The price of a kilo of arecanut, which was Rs. 900 in August 2014, has come down to Rs. 260 now.The crop in more than 600 hectares was damaged last year owing to moisture stress caused by drought.K.T. Gangadhar, working president of Karnataka Rajya Raitha Sangha, has slammed the decision taken by the Centre to keep arecanut out of the purview of PMKSY
Source: Concern over keeping arecanut out of PMKSY’s purview – The Hindu
Maruthi Manpade, State president of Karnataka Prantha Raitha Sangha (KPRS), held the Union government responsible for falling prices of farm produce in the domestic market and resultant agrarian crisis.Speaking to reporters here on Monday, he criticised the government’s import policy by terming it “anti-farmer.” He held that India’s imports are not based on domestic requirement and production, but on pressure from international and domestic capitalists.“Our import policy was designed for safeguarding the interests of both domestic and international capitalists and not of domestic farmers. For instance, of the 24 lakh tonnes of pulses that India needs for a year, 20 lakh tonnes are domestically produced. We should import only four tonnes. However, our government imported 20 lakh tonnes last year and 10 lakh tonnes this year. This will surely cause price crash of pulses in the domestic market as there is an overstock of pulses,” he said. He said that though 2016 is being observed as International Year of Pulses, the Centre was “tightening the noose” around pulses growers.
Source: ‘Anti-farmer import policy causing price crash for farm produce’ – The Hindu
A millet mela will be held here on Friday and Saturday to popularise their use in the wake of intense water scarcity afflicting agriculture in the region.The mela, to be held at Nanjaraja Bahadur Choultry, is being organised by Sahaja Samruddha, an organization popularising the use of dry crops like millets instead of water-intensive crops like paddy, in association with Hasiru Sene and Karnataka Rajya Raitha Sangha. Millet cultivators from 12 districts across the State will participate in the mela.
Source: Mela to popularise sowing millet tomorrow – KARNATAKA – The Hindu
An exercise to educate farmers against cultivating paddy and sugarcane, as these crops require more water, is underway in the district.Following insufficient rainfall in the catchment areas of Cauvery in Kodagu and less storage at reservoirs along Cauvery, the State Cabinet recently decided to use the storage at the Krishnaraja Sagar (KRS) and Tungabhadra (TB) dam only for drinking purposes during the ongoing kharif season.
Source: Campaign to educate farmers against cultivating paddy, sugarcane stepped up – KARNATAKA – The Hindu