1. Commodity News

Farmers, Traders Worried as Chilli Prices Fall

Abha Toppo
Abha Toppo

Chilli traders and farmers are concerned as the prices of different varieties of the commodity have plunged by Rs 1500/quintal in the past two weeks at Asia’s biggest chilli yard. Price of the Teja variety at the NTR Mirchi Yard in Guntur has dropped to Rs 7300 /quintal from Rs 8800 and the cost of Badegi variety that was sold at Rs 10000 /quintal has come down to Rs 8900 /quintal. The same is with other chilli varieties available at the yard.

As per the available data, arrival of the produce from September to December 2018 was 40000 to 50000 bags per day. And in between April and the 1st week of January, 84, 51,648 bags had reached the market yard. Therefore the farmers urged the government to intervene and offer a fair price for their produce.

A farmer from Prathipadu, N Venkata Narasaiah, who invested Rs 1 lakh / acre for farming said chilli yields dropped to 8 to 10 quintals / acre from 20 quintals. He said, “I and other farmers of the area won’t be able to recover the investment we made on the crop. In the year 2017 to 2018, we got Rs 11,000 per quintal of the Teja variety.” He along with other farmers said the crop was cultivated in 40 % less farmlands as compared to last year.

On the other hand, Y Venkateswara Rao, a chilli trader said demand for the commodity dropped as its quality reduced owing to deficit rains. Moreover, a viral infection in the crop also had a major contribution in this.

In contrast, farmers in Kadapa and Kurnool are obtaining good prices for their produce as they used water from the borewells for irrigation.

M Venkateswara Reddy, Agriculture Market Committee’s Selection Grade Secretary told about the reason behind the sharp decline in chilli prices. He said, “The price actually depends on the quality of the produce. The cost of chilli varieties have gone down in the international market also. The crop was grown in 77,000 hectares of farmlands in Guntur in 2018. More than 1 lakh tikkies of the produce reach the NTR Mirchi Yard daily in the month of January.”

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