Hyderabad: The State government’s persistent efforts to get the farmers in Telangana to take up alternate crops instead of paddy appears to be paying off with Agriculture Minister S Niranjan Reddy stating on Thursday that farmers across the State were taking up alternate crops on a large scale. Subsequently, sufficient seed stocks have been made available at the field level in the State. The shift in cultivation pattern is an encouraging sign since the State government has consistently been advising them to take up cultivation of alternate crops based on market demand and not focus only on paddy cultivation.
Majority of the farmers were opting for pulses and oilseeds and in tune with the demand, peanut and chana dal seeds were available in adequate quantities, he said, at a review meeting here. The Minister said that compared to the past, farmers were evincing much more interest in cultivating millets, castor oil, sesame and mustard.
Apart from alternate crops, farmers were being trained on integrated farming at Rythu Vedikas across the State. Officials were providing all the information pertaining to agriculture and allied sectors to farmers at Rythu Vedikas.
So far, 8,098 training classes were conducted on alternate crops through Rythu Vedikas, besides 22,123 training classes on a variety of topics relating to farming, he said adding “This is commendable”. He said apart from latest technology, print and electronic media services should be used in sharing information on agricultural allied products to farmers.
The Agriculture Minister also reviewed the progress of oil palm nurseries being taken up as part of promoting alternate crop cultivation among farmers.
As per the targets, all arrangements are being made to provide oil palm saplings at the field level for the next Vana Kalaam season, he said adding that sufficient quantity of fertilizers for Yasangi season were made available.
On cotton crops, the Minister said while the Minimum Support Price for cotton was Rs. 6,025 per quintal, the market prices was about Rs.7,000 per quintal, which, he said, was a welcome development. “Based on this year’s experience, next year farmers should take up cotton cultivation on a large scale,” Niranjan Reddy said.
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