Rains, pest attacks to hurt cotton output
DECCAN CHRONICLE | Ravindra Seshu
KHAMMAM: Cotton production is expected to fall dramatically as a result of the four months of incessant rain and pest attacks. While cotton output is expected to be low, experts predict that cotton quality is also likely to be affected by the same factors.
Cotton is grown on 2.21 lakh acres in Khammam district this year, and farmers are concerned about a drop in output from their fields. Experts predicted 17 lakh quintals of cotton for the season in July, but these projections are unlikely to be met.
"With the continuous rains, the cotton colour could turn black, and traders may offer below the minimum support price (MSP) of Rs 6,080 per quintal of cotton. The rains may also impact the quality of cotton produced," said Gudavarthi Srinvasa Rao, an analyst.
Farmers began to complain that this year's crop yield is significantly lower than the previous year's. "I got three bags of cotton in the first reap against five bags," said N. Appa Rao, a cotton farmer in Pandillapalli, Chintakani mandal. The traders offered Rs 5,700 per quintal as opposed to the MSP of Rs 6,080. We spent Rs 25,000 per acre to grow cotton."
Khammam is a major cotton market, and traders from Maharashtra and Gujarat used to lift cotton from the traders. These two states' traders used to buy nearly five lakh quintals of cotton.
The pink worm harmed the cotton flock and will have an impact on output in at least seven mandals, including Bonakal, Konigerla, Enkoor, Kusumanchi, Tirumalayapalem, Madhira, and Errupalem. "There are complaints of reduced cotton yields due to pink worm and rains," said M Sudhakar, a Jalamitra awardee. "Cotton production in Khammam district will be 15 lakh quintals, as opposed to 17 lakh quintals. Some farmers will suffer losses," he said