Kerala Agriculture Minister says Kerafed to procure raw coconuts directly from farmers

Kerafed, the apex cooperative federation of coconut farmers, is taking steps to directly procure raw coconut from farmers, Agriculture Minister P. Prasad informed the Assembly on Thursday.

In the first phase, procurement will be carried out in three districts where prices have fallen below the procurement price of ₹32 per kg, the Minister said, replying to a calling attention motion moved by Kurukkoli Moideen of the IUML.

Procurement centres will be opened at the Kerafed regional office at Anayara in Thiruvananthapuram, the Kerafed office at Poochinnipadam in Thrissur, and the Coconut Processing and Marketing Society in Perumpadappu block, Ponnani, Malappuram.

In the three districts, the price of coconut had plummeted to ₹31 a kg. If needed, more centres would be opened, said Mr. Prasad.

The Centre is yet to accede to the State's repeated demand for a Kerala-specific minimum support price (MSP) for raw coconut. Such a step is essential if coconut farmers are to benefit, said Mr. Prasad.

Nodal agencies

The State government, in the Budget 2021-22, had raised the procurement price of coconut to ₹32, he said. The government had also appointed Kerafed and the Kerala State Coconut Development Corporation as nodal agencies.

Mr. Moideen had called the attention of the Minister to the necessity of procuring raw coconut on panchayat basis and increasing the procurement price to help struggling farmers. He urged the Agriculture Department to open more procurement centres to aid them.

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Printable version | Sep 22, 2021 8:55:58 AM |

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