Staff Reporter

ALAPPUZHA: The State Cooperative Department is preparing to foray into procurement of fresh coconut and paddy through its cooperative societies, Coir and Cooperation Minister G. Sudhakaran has said.

Speaking at the distribution of farmers’ debt relief here on Wednesday, the Minister said a meeting to decide on the modalities for paddy procurement would be held at Thiruvananthapuram on January 7. The National Agricultural Cooperative Marketing Federation (NAFED) had approved the procurement of fresh coconuts by cooperatives.

The plan was to procure fresh coconuts via primary cooperative societies, hand them over to the Marketfed, Kerafed and the Consumerfed, who in turn would process them into copra before handing over to NAFED, Mr. Sudhakaran said, adding that agencies deputed to procure fresh coconuts had failed miserably, which was why the cooperative department had decided to step in.

A.A. Shukoor, MLA, presided over the programme.