TAMIL NADU

New markets for banana, onion to come up in Tiruchi

New markets for banana and onion would be established at M. Puthur and Kallikudi, respectively, in the district under the Supply Chain Management Scheme which seeks to improve marketing linkages for farmers and reduce post harvest losses of vegetables and fruits.

The two new markets would be supplied by processed banana and onion from the 10 primary processing centres (PPCs), which are coming up in the district. Five PPCs each are being built for banana and onion in the district.

The processing centres would have necessary facilities for handling, processing and sorting or grading of banana and onion and are to be provided with necessary machines.

The PPCs in turn would get supplies from 59 collection centres at the village-level where banana/onion growers are being organised into farmers interests groups (FIGs). Each PPC would have six collection centres. The FIGs would also come together to form Farmers Producers Organisations (FPOs), which would be vested with the responsibility of managing and operating the PPCs, said Collector K. Rajamani after inspecting the construction of the storage godowns under the scheme at the Manachanallur Regulated Market recently.

The primary processing centres for banana are being established at Lalgudi, Manachanallur, Arasalur, Pidaramangalam and Thiruchendurai and for onion at Manachanallur, P. K. Agaram, Uppilliyappuram (South), Thuraiyur and Thathaiyengarpet.

The PPCs are expected to become functional by October after installing of machinery.

The Supply Chain Management scheme is being implemented with an allocation of Rs. 28.66 crore in Tiruchi district.

The scheme is being implemented at a total investment of Rs. 398.75 crore in 10 districts in the State.

Officials of the Agricultural Marketing and Agri Business said steps were being taken to establish linkages between farmers producers companies, which would be running the PPCs, and traders so that farmers are able to get a good market and return for their produce. “We have identified the FPOs to run the PPCs and the members of the organisations will be provided necessary training,” said R. Kailasapathy, Deputy Director, Agri Business, Tiruchi.

J. Anantharaman of the Manchanallur Horticulture Banana Farmers Producers Organisation, which would be given charge of the PPCs at Manachanallur, said the farmers were hoping to get better returns by processing the banana and selling it markets such as Koyambedu and other markets directly instead of going through middlemen.

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