KARIMNAGAR: Transportation costs of chilli to the few centralised purchasing centres have become an additional financial burden for chilli farmers. There is no chilli purchasing centre in old Adilabad and Karimnagar districts.
Adilabad chillli farmers take their chilli produce to Nagpur and Karimnagar chilli farmers to Warangal market for sale.
Each farmer is spending nearly Rs10,000 to Rs15,000 on transportation to Warangal or Nagpur. The costs would be higher if they have to stay back in the market for more days.
Middlemen and agents are exploiting chilli farmers by taking advantage of their helplessness. Farmers are forced to sell their produce for Rs 2,500 to Rs 3,000 per quintal.
Farmers cultivate different varieties of chillis in the Manthani area in Peddapalli district and take their produce to Warangal.
The same is the case with Mancherial district farmers and they take their chillies to Nagpur and Nirmal farmers to Nizamabad or markets bordering Maharashtra.
Farmers now demand the establishment of purchasing centres locally and remunerative prices for their chilli produce so that they cut down on the transport expenditure.
Agriculture officials said some farmers were defying their advice to go for traditional crops like jowar and maize and redgram, but they were cultivating commercial crops like chilli, turmeric and cotton and are landing in trouble due to low remunerative prices and low yield.
Chilli farmer Ramanna of Vemanpalli in Mancherial district said chilli farmers would be saved if the state government establish purchasing centres locally and provided a remunerative price of at least Rs 5,000 per quintal.