Cotton farmers in the district are keeping their fingers crossed as markets have reacted with caution in procuring the first harvest, which is beginning to show signs of discoloration, termed as low-grade.

Cotton is among the badly affected crops due to persistent submergence, and cotton grown in Black Cotton Soil is among the badly hit crop in the district.

This comes at a time when demand for domestic cotton has scaled due to short supply in major cotton-producing countries like China and Pakistan.

In a bid to win support of the farmers, political parties have begun to exert pressure on the Cotton Corporation of India to open procurement centres and start buying cotton, while the CCI is playing it safe and seems to wait for the next harvest due in December.

Production in Andhra Pradesh is expected to touch 65.68 lakh bales and, as on November second weekend, the arrivals just reached 4.42 lakh bales.

Export limit

The Cotton Advisory Board is expecting a record harvest of 325.48 lakh bales in the country, out of which 229 lakh bales is expected to be consumed by domestic mills. The export limit is pegged at about 60 lakh bales.

The CCI has begun plans to open 30 procurement centres, but senior officials maintain that any effort to exert pressure to procure low- grade cotton will be dealt severely.

“The CCI, during commercial purchases, does not take the risk. We expect the arrivals to improve in quality and hope farmers will reap the benefits of good harvest,” said a senior official of the CCI.

But hopes of good harvest have revived as the rains have abated.

The water-logged fields have shown a sign of drying as sun is shining.

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