Agriculture World

Plantation Crops in Kerala Suffer Huge Loss due to Coronavirus

KJ Staff
KJ Staff

Several cash crops have suffered heavy losses during the lockdown which is imposed due to the spread of coronavirus in Kerala and therefore the plantation sector is in the grip of crisis. The home to several plantation crops (Kerala) has recorded the worst loss due to rapidly growing number of virus victims. 

An estimation was made by the Association of Planters of Kerala (APK) that the loss in the plantation industry in the state could be around Rs. 500 crore and the rubber sector alone suffering damage of Rs. 300 crore. 

According to the industry body, it was also estimated that the loss would be nearly 1.25 crore in tea plantations and around Rs. 20 crore for cardamom. The loss is calculated to be minimal in the cardamom and coffee plantations because the harvest is over, the irrigation and application of fertilisers and pesticides have been affected. 

From Friday, the government of Kerala has relaxed the conditions to allow harvesting, processing irrigation, pesticide application and transportation in a limited way. It is said that one employee in half an acre for tea and one acre in cardamom

Ajith BK who is APK secretary has said that "We have requested the Centre for payment of lockdown period wages, interest write-off for the moratorium period and benchmark pricing system for plantation crops". 

Association of Planters of Kerala has requested the state government to:- 

  • Waive fixed tariff for electricity.

  • Provide funds from welfare fund board.

  • Bring irrigation processing tariff under agriculture.

  • Extend health equipment to plantation workers.

 Shirish Vijayendra who is Karnataka Planters Association chairman said that "These crucial activities for the cultivation of the next crop have been hit by shortage of workers. The transport of workers from neighbouring villages has come to a standstill". 

Let me tell you that Karnataka is the largest coffee producing state in the country and the lockdown has hit processing, nursery activities, transport and irrigation even though the plucking of beans is over in most places. 

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