Andhra Pradesh

Price of cotton, sunflower seeds shoot up in the open market

With the India Meteorological Department’s (IMD) forecasting that the southwest monsoon will make its onset on May 27 this year, four days ahead of its normal date, there is a spurt in the demand for cotton and sunflower seeds in Anantapur district.

In the open market, these non-subsidised seeds are being sold at double the price at which farmers bought them in 2021 kharif.

The demand for sunflower seed has shot up this year. But it is not available at last year’s price. The reason the dealers cite is that its MRP has increased steeply.

At Peddavaduguru, a farmer, who is readying for sowing cotton taking advantage of the rain triggered by Cyclone Asani, says that the price of the certified seed, which was ₹800 a kg last year, has gone up to ₹1,600. The uncertified seed, however, continues to be sold at ₹800.

The farmers of the village had purchased 200 packets of BT-II cotton seed last year, which did not germinate. Since it was purchased without bill, they could not go legally against that company.

In Anantapur distinct, the Agriculture Department had placed an indent for 1.40 lakh packets of cotton seed of 450 grams each (enough for one acre) with the A.P. State Seeds Development Corporation (APSSDC).

Joint Director (Agriculture) Chandra Naik said the seed would likely be made available at the Rythu Bharosa Kendra much ahead of the sowing time.

The normal area under cotton in the undivided Anantapur district is 47,500 hectares. But in reality, the extent has gone down to 4,000 hectares. “In view of the good price cotton has commanded this season, the sowing my look up this kharif,” said Mr. Naik.

In Kurnool district, the normal sowing area is 2.47 lakh hectares, for which the department has placed an indent for 17.25 lakh packets of seed. “At present, only six lakh packets are available,” Joint Director of Agriculture P.L. Varalakshmi told The Hindu.

She said the department had placed an indent for BT-II cotton seed, which would be sold for ₹810 per packet. Any violation of the MRP, would be viewed seriously and legal action initiated, she warned.

“The RBKs can supply the required quantity as and when the seed is needed. MoUs have been arrived at by the APSSDC for supply of seed to the RBKs,” she added.

In Kurnool district, the extent under sunflower was only 880 hectares last season. But the Agriculture Department expects it to go up slightly this year.

In Anantapur district, the normal sowing area is 1,672 hectares. “The Agriculture Department is yet to place an indent with the APSSDC for sunflower as the sowing takes place during late kharif,” said Mr. Naik.


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Printable version | May 29, 2022 6:24:18 pm | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/andhra-pradesh/price-of-cotton-sunflower-seeds-shoot-up-in-the-open-market/article65417216.ece