Kuttanad paddy farmers in trouble as summer rains hinder harvest and procurement

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Kuttanad: Though summer rains have subdued in the state, the paddy fields in Kuttanad are already in submerged condition due to the downpour. Harvest and procurement are getting affected as deploying equipment and machines in water-logged fields is a cumbersome task. Notably, this adds to the challenges linked to climate change, that the farmers here are facing.

Paddy farmers under Pulikunnu Krishi Bhavan here were forced to abandon the harvest in a stretch of nearly 8 acres. Many other regions also reported a similar plight of farmers. As the equipment and machine get entombed in mud, harvesting has become impossible.

Hence, many farmers started to rely on manual methods. However, the cost incurred will be high. It will cost Rs 10,000 for harvesting one-acre field manually. If the machines and equipment are used, the cost can be curtailed to Rs 4,000. Time lost in the process is also another factor. The farmers complained that they have been facing troubles one after another. Meanwhile, the availability of machines is posing a challenge for farmers in some areas.

Despite the challenge, about 65 per cent of paddy in the district has been harvested. Similarly, the procurement is at 63 per cent. According to the data revealed by Kerala State Civil Supplies Corporation, Rs 77.04 crore has been dispensed to the farmers as part of procurement. While the daily procurement is 1800 tonnes.

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