gingerKattapana : Ginger farmers in the High Range areas are a worried lot due to the sharp decline in the price of the rhizome. The slump in market prices of ginger is due to the increased production costs and climatic vagaries. The high labour costs too have affected the farmers as many have availed huge loans to get into ginger farming on a large scale.

Right from land possession to harvesting ginger, farmers have to doubly alert. A kilo of raw ginger costs less than Rs 20 and for dry ginger, a kilo fetches up to Rs 95 to Rs 100. If there is some respite in the production costs then they could fetch a decent profit, farmers opine.

Labourers reach the High Range areas from Tamil Nadu and the daily wages have increased putting the farmers in crisis.  Due to labour costs and decline in prices, many of the farmers have not harvested ginger. Added to this, the farmers in Idukki are upset over the low quality ginger and dry ginger coming from Tamil Nadu.