Tobacco Board assures farmers of talks with merchants

Chairman of Tobacco Board Y. Raghunadha Babu has assured the tobacco farmers of Mysuru area that he’ll quickly convene a gathering with merchants and persuade them to extend the value of tobacco they have been buying from the farmers.

Mr. Babu was addressing tobacco farmers, who had gathered on the Regional Workplace of Tobacco Board in Mysuru on Friday, to voice their concern over the falling costs of the commodity ever because the public sale season started in early October.

He expressed confidence that retailers and representatives of world cigarette manufacturing corporations will honour the Board’s attraction and urged the tobacco farmers to not panic.

Farmers in Mysuru area have been up in arms towards the federal government over the collapse of tobacco costs, notably the medium and low grade varieties, making an enormous dent of their earnings. The low grade number of tobacco, which used to fetch greater than ₹ 100 per kg, is now lower than ₹70 to ₹80 per kg, which had considerably introduced down the common worth of tobacco in the course of the ensuing season, the farmers complained.

Although Mr. Babu attributed the autumn in costs to poor international demand for tobacco within the gentle of COVID-19, the farmers mentioned the merchants have been exploiting the state of affairs to extend their revenue margins on the expense of the farmers.

A big share of tobacco cultivated in Karnataka is exported overseas, notably to the European international locations, that are presently reeling below the impression of COVID-19, which impacts the lungs. The medical fraternity can be cautioning the general public towards smoking, which additionally impacts the lungs, he mentioned.

Nonetheless, Mr. Babu mentioned the state of affairs in Karnataka was nonetheless not as unhealthy because the situation of tobacco farmers in neighbouring Andhra Pradesh, the place public sale season had coincided with the height of COVID-19 in April. The Andhra Pradesh authorities was compelled to intervene out there and buy about 13 million kg of tobacco via Andhra Pradesh State Cooperative Advertising Federation (Markfed).

Mysuru MP Pratap Simha, who additionally participated within the assembly, mentioned merchants weren’t even sustaining the costs they supplied initially of the public sale season, not to mention rising them. He urged the Board Chairman to carry the merchants accountable to the costs they’d quoted whereas giving an indent on the time of crop measurement fixation.

The Board, based mostly on the indent submitted by the merchants, had mounted the crop measurement for Karnataka at 88 million kg. However, in view of extra manufacturing, the tobacco output is anticipated to cross 95 million kg this yr.

With the merchants refusing to buy low and medium grade tobacco, Mr. Simha mentioned the farmers are compelled to incur extra expenditure on transport of rejected tobacco bales from the public sale platforms again to their farms and produce them again repeatedly.

Former MP C.H. Vijayshankar, who was additionally participated within the assembly, urged the Board authorities to make sure that the tobacco public sale season culminates by February and never stretched until April-Could subsequent yr.

Manjunath, Regional Supervisor of Tobacco Board, Mysuru, mentioned a complete of 24 million kg of tobacco had been auctioned until now.