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Monday, July 16, 2001

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Market intervention mooted to raise cotton output

G. Gurumurthy

COIMBATORE, July 15

TAMIL Nadu has witnessed a drop in cotton crop area during the last ten years and its productivity, too, has declined during this period.

From a crop area of about 2.4 lakh hectares (l.h) during 1990-91, the State's area under cotton has fallen to 1.84 l. h in 1999-2000 and the per hectare yeild of seeded cotton has slumped during this period from 350 kg to 260 kg, according to Mr Ganesan, Commissioner for State Agricultural Marketing.

Addressing a cotton farmers awareness meeting on cotton contamination held at Boothapadi cotton market in Erode district, Mr Ganesan suggested introduction of market intervention mechanism to sustain the farmers interest in cotton crop as the price fall in the commodity as witnessed this season would force them to shift to other crops. He wanted the Technology Mission on Cotton (TMC) to explore the possibility taking up some market intervention system.

The official also suggested that TMC could explore the scope of supporting on-line trading in cotton which could be started at cotton marketing yards . This would widen the marketing tool for the farmers.

Mr Ganesan favoured the TMC extending financial support for providing sprinkler irrigation system to cotton farming and also subsidising cotton seed supply under the technology mission's purview.

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