Food production set to take a massive hit in Mysuru

All seven taluks were declared as drought-hit in Mysuru this year. —File PHOTO

All seven taluks were declared as drought-hit in Mysuru this year. —File PHOTO  

66,490 hectares have been affected with low yield owing to drought

Food production is set to take a massive hit with crop loss in Mysuru district being estimated at nearly 40 per cent of the cultivated area.

The final report submitted to the government indicates that out of 1,36,823 hectares of cereals sown, 66,490.34 hectares have been affected with low yield consequent to drought.

Out of the 66,490.34 hectares, there is more than 33 per cent of crop loss in 60,706 hectares.

Joint Director of Agriculture Somasundaram told The Hindu that the cereals affected include rice, jowar, ragi and maize.

While paddy cultivation was taken up on 72,499 hectares of land in the district crop on 14,670 hectares has been affected.

But the bulk of maize is expected to be wiped out due to low yield and stunted growth consequent to the drought.

Maize was cultivated on 43,818 hectares of which drought has affected 34, 884.88 hectares. Pulses was cultivated on 61,116 hectares of which crop under 31,928 hectares has been affected and the yield is expected to be negligible.

The major pulses grown in Mysuru during the kharif season include toor, horse gram, black gram, green cram, avare, cowpea etc.

Overall, foodgrains, comprising cereals and pulses, were cultivated on 1,97,939 hectares of land of which standing crops on 98,418.34 hectares have been affected.

Production of oil seeds is also set to be hit due to drought and this includes groundnut, sesamum sunflower, mustard, soyabean among others.

Mr. Somasundaram said the government will extend assistance by way of input subsidy at the rate of Rs. 6,800 per hectare to the affected farmers.

He said that this year’s drought was severe and all seven taluks have been declared as drought-hit while five taluks were drought-affected last year.

While drought has taken a toll on foodgrains and oil seeds, commercial crops fare marginally better. Out of 1,12,385 hectares of land brought under commercial crops, like cotton, sugarcane and tobacco, standing crop on 32,496 hectares has been affected as on November 10, 2016, according to the report.

In all an area of 3,16,460 hectares of land was brought under agriculture in the district during the kharif season this year of which crop on 1,33,987.36 hectares has been badly affected.

The crop damage has been highest in areas where agriculture is conducted under rain-fed conditions.

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