The State government will take the required measures for the hassle-free procurement of raw cashew nut (RCN) produced domestically.
An agreement in this regard was reached at a high-level meeting held at Thiruvananthapuram on Wednesday and the procurement will be through the Aralam Farming Corporation Kerala, cooperative societies, Plantation Corporation, and State Farming Corporation. The raw cashew nut from 614 hectares of Aralam Farm will be procured at the market price. The farm produces high-quality raw cashew nut and the tribespeopl from the area are mainly involved in the collection of raw material.
The meeting observed that the decision will be beneficial for them. While issues raised by cooperative societies regarding procurement will be resolved, delays in collection will be avoided. The collection will be mainly from societies that have facilities for storage and the proposal for giving production incentives to farmers will also be examined.
The meeting was held to explore the possibilities of procuring raw cashew nut from the State required for the operation of government-run factories under the Kerala State Cashew Development Corporation (KSCDC) and Kerala State Cashew Workers Apex Industrial Cooperative Society (Capex). Besides the high cost of processing, the scarcity of raw cashew nut is the main problem plaguing the cashew industry at present. Currently the high-quality raw cashew nut produced in plantations under the Agriculture, Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes, and Jail departments mainly goes to other States.
Industries Minister P. Rajeev, who chaired the meeting, said that the government was contemplating procuring and using the raw cashew nut from public sector plantations in a way that was beneficial for the State.
Ministers K. Radhakrishnan, K.N. Balagopal, V.N. Vasavan, P. Prasad, Secretaries, and Kerala State Cashew Development Corporation Chairman S. Jayamohan, attended the meeting.