Rise in input cost of areca cultivation has necessitated the hike, says coop. chief

The Central Arecanut and Cocoa Marketing and Processing Cooperative Ltd. (Campco) will take the lead in revising the production cost of arecanut again. A meeting to this effect will be held in Mangalore on October 8, said Konkodi Padmanabha, president of the cooperative.

He told the annual general meeting of the cooperative in Mangalore on Wednesday that the G.V. Joshi Committee had revised the production cost of arecanut in 2010-11. The cooperative would ask the same committee to work out the production cost for 2013-14.

Mr. Padmanabha announced this after several members at the meeting said it was necessary to work out the production cost of arecanut again as the input cost of arecanut cultivation had increased owing to inflation.

The G.V. Joshi committee had been constituted by Campco after the State government asked the cooperative to revise the production cost of arecanut on behalf of the government. In the latest development, Campco has taken the lead in revising the production cost on demand by its grower members.

Mr. Padmanabha told the meeting that the second report of the committee would be sent to both the State government and the Union government.

M. Suresh Bhandary, managing director of the cooperative, told The Hindu that many members at the meeting urged the cooperative to ensure it did allow the prevailing price of arecanut – Rs. 200 per kg – to decline further.

They urged the cooperative to continue to pressurise the government to provide financial assistance to arecanut growers whose plantations had been hit by fruit rot disease this monsoon. The president told the meeting that a delegation of representatives of different organisations from arecanut growing districts and representatives of cooperative societies had met Chief Minister Siddaramaiah on September 6 and apprised him of the problems of arecanut growers.

The Chief Minister has responded positively to help the areca growers who are in distress.

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