Rise in potato prices brings some relief to Punjab farmers
The past few years have witnessed surplus production of potatoes in the state and lack of buyers forced farmers to dump their crop on roads after a steep crash in prices.punjab Updated: Mar 22, 2018 13:10 IST
In some relief to the potato farmers, who have been suffering losses for the past three years, prices of the crop have witnessed a marginal rise during this season following a decline in the production of the crop across the country.
“The rise in prices has brought relief to the farmers, who were not getting adequate price for potatoes post-demonetisation, but the rate, which is varying from Rs 5 to Rs 7, was only enough to compensate the cost of production,” said a farmer, Paramjit Singh Toor.
In a series of reports, HT had highlighted the plight of the potato farmers, who had been facing heavy losses. The past few years have witnessed surplus production of potatoes in the state and lack of buyers forced farmers to dump their crop on roads after a steep crash in prices.
As per information, production of one kilogram of potato costs a farmer ₹5 to ₹6 after including all the charges from seeding to labouring.
Satbir Singh, deputy director of horticulture department, said due to low production in Bengal and other states of the country, prices of potatoes are expected to rise in coming days due to rising demand of the crop in other states,” he said. Jugraj Singh, another farmer, said before demonetisation, they had sold potatoes at not less than Rs 10 to 12.
“The government should regulate the prices. Consumers are still getting potatoes at Rs 20 per kg, which the farmers have been selling at Rs 5 to Rs 6 only,” he said.
Buyers lifting potatoes on credit
Farmers said the commission agents are lifting their crop on credit. “Commission agents come to buy the crop and make excuses that they don’t have money due to demonetisation and ask farmers to give them time of at least three months to pay for their lifted crop,” Kuldeep Singh Dhot, a farmer said.