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Cotton cultivation likely to go up in state

Cotton cultivation likely to go up  in state
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The cotton cultivation area in the state is likely to increase from 20 to 25 per cent during this season due to increase of minimum support price MSP by the Centre

Guntur: The cotton cultivation area in the state is likely to increase from 20 to 25 per cent during this season due to increase of minimum support price (MSP) by the Centre.

The Union government had recently increased MSP on cotton from Rs 4,300 to Rs 5100 per quintal. The farmers started cotton cultivation due to release of Pattiseema water to Krishna Western Delta region in Guntur.

Earlier, the farmers who cultivated red gram, Bengal gram, black gram, maize and green gram, suffered huge losses due to falling of prices caused by importing of pulses by the Central government. Now, all these farmers shifted to cotton cultivation to make a fast buck.

Though water level increasing at Srisailam, inflows are not coming into Nagarjuna Sagar reservoir. Favourable climatic conditions for cotton crop is also one of the reason.

The farmers of Palnadu region shifting to cotton from pulses as a result the cotton growing area is increasing rapidly. In the last season, the farmers cultivated cotton in 4.5 lakh acres in Guntur district and so far, the farmers started cotton cultivation in 2.5 lakh acres in the state.

Farmers have another 45-day time to start cotton cultivation. In the last season, the cotton cultivation taken up in 5.5 lakh acres. Similarly, the farmers cultivated cotton in 12.5 lakh acres in the state. This year, the cotton growing area in the state is expected to increase in the state at least by 25 per cent.

K Sambasiva Rao, a farmer cultivating cotton in Pidiguralla, said “I have shifted from ID crops to cotton because the district has received excess rainfall so far and due to favourable climatic conditions. If rains continue, I will get good yield. Increase of MSP by the Centre is useful to the farmers. Farmers who cultivated pulses in the last year were also shifted to cotton this season.”

An official from Agriculture Marketing Department B Bhaskara Reddy said “Cotton growing area is expected to increase at least by 25 per cent this season due to falling of pulse prices in the last season.”

An official in agriculture department on the condition of anonymity, said “So far farmers cultivated cotton in 2.5 lakh acres in the district. The cotton growing is expected to increase this season."

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