Kolar farmers urge govt to fix MSP for tomato, onion as prices crash in Karnataka
Growers of tomatoes and onions are worried because the state’s prices have dropped because of the big harvest. Kolar’s Fruit and Vegetable Growers Struggle Committee has asked the government to set a minimum support price for growers of onions and tomatoes to protect the farmers’ interests.
A few days ago, people at the Yeshwanthpur Agriculture Produce Market Committee (APMC) Yard said that the price of onions had dropped to between ₹ 2 and ₹ 10 per kg. But it has now settled between ₹ 12 and ₹ 18 per kg, based on the quality of the produce.
‘Even ₹ 12 per kg is not enough to make up for all the trouble we’ve been through. A fair amount is spent on getting the crop from one place to another, loading it, and unloading it’ A Bengaluru onion farmer was sad. People who brought their goods from far away in hopes of getting a good price were very unhappy.
Pavadeppa Hallikeri, a farmer from Thimmapura in North Karnataka’s Gadag district, grew a lot of onions. Instead of selling them at the Gadag APMC Yard, he decided to sell them in Bengaluru.
When he got to the Bengaluru market on November 22 with 205 kg of onions, he found out that the price in the city had dropped to ₹ 2 per kg. So, he got ₹ 410 and had to pay ₹ 401.64 to have the goods unloaded.
He only had ₹ 8.36 on him, and now a picture of his bills is going viral on social media. ‘It was a blunder to grow onions and take them to Bengaluru for a good return,’ the onion-growing farmer told reporters.
Hallikeri said that it was a double whammy for farmers in his area because there were floods and the price dropped.
Tomato farmers in South Karnataka have the same problems as onion farmers in North Karnataka.
Manjunath, a wholesale vegetable dealer in this city’s KR Market, says that tomatoes cost between ₹ 5 and ₹ 6 per kg in the wholesale market, but between ₹ 8 and ₹ 12 per kg in the retail market.
Neelaturu Chinnappa Reddy, who is in charge of the Kolar district fruits and vegetable growers struggle committee, has asked the government to set a minimum support price for onions, potatoes, and tomatoes.
‘We vegetable growers are in tears. For all the hard work, time, money, and months of waiting, we are barely making ₹ 1.5 for every kilogram of tomatoes we sell these days. We only get ₹ 300 for every 2 kg of tomatoes we grow ‘ Reddy told PTI.