Kandukur: Tobacco farmers told to adapt better practices

Tobacco Board Chairman Yadlapati Raghunath Babu inaugurating auction at tobacco auction centre at Kandukur on Monday
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Tobacco Board Chairman Yadlapati Raghunath Babu inaugurating auction at tobacco auction centre at Kandukur on Monday

Highlights

  • Kandukur: Tobacco farmers told to adapt better practices
  • He notes that the government wants other big companies also to participate in the auction to help the farmers receive better prices

Kandukur: Tobacco Board chairman Yadlapati Raghunath Babu clarified that there is neither any move by the Union government to close the Tobacco Board, nor curb its powers. The government wants the farmers and companies to benefit mutually and may seek them to follow better practices, he added.

The Tobacco Board has approved to cultivate tobacco in 50,081 hectares to produce about 79.10 million kilos of the leaf, in the two southern regions of the State during 2021-22 season. However, the farmers are able to cultivate in only 47,508 hectares and expected to produce about 68.50 million kilos only. Due to the increased expenditure in cultivation and atmospheric issues, the extent and quantity of the leaf produced are decreased considerably. The farmers are requesting the Board officials to make sure the companies offer them an average price of at least Rs 170 per kilo of the leaf, as they spent about Rs 150 per kilo to produce it.

As the auction in Karnataka is to be conclude by this month-end, Tobacco Board chairman Yadlapati Raghunath Babu inaugurated the auction at Kandukur on Monday. Responding to the farmers on the news that the Union government was mulling over scraping Tobacco Board and introducing contract farming, the chairman assured that there was no move like that with the government. He said the Board was established with the sacrifices of the farmers and it will continue to function as it is used to do. But he observed that the government wants other big companies also to participate in the auction to help the farmers receive better prices.

Raghunath Babu said that the companies are insisting the farmers follow certain quality measures from sowing to curing and allow their representatives to inspect the crop in various stages by geotagging the location.

He advised them to consider adapting to the better practices in the cultivation of tobacco, to receive better prices for the crop, as a mutual benefit to both the company and farmer.

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