Kannur: Due to the crisis created by the weather, the increase in the cost of tapping fees and the increase in the price of fertilizers, the farmers have reached a point where they cannot continue rubber cultivation.
It has been six months since the financial assistance to eligible farmers under the Rubber Price Stabilization Scheme implemented by the state government to help rubber farmers has been stopped. The farmers received only financial assistance till March. Out of the 120 crores to be given as incentives, the government allocated only 30 crores. Farmers are facing a situation where they cannot keep up with climate change, global warming and reduced milk supply. Last February, March and April, milk production had decreased significantly.
Rubber cultivation is very capital and labor intensive as compared to other crops. About 450 trees can be cultivated per hectare. It takes seven years of growth to tap. After digging and planting a good variety of saplings, clearing the forest, fertilizing and taking care of it and taking the income, if you look closely at the investment, there will be a loss in front of you. A year’s maintenance alone costs more than 1.5 lakhs. Farmers are forced to give up farming when the income fails. Meanwhile, as the price increased, the tapping fee also had to be increased. But even though the price has decreased, the wages have not decreased. It is sold as raw milk and whole milk. The price of chirat milk is Rs 70 per kg. Dry and clean camel milk fetches up to Rs.80. Due to the rainy season, it is difficult to get dry camel milk and cow milk.
Farmers are about to give up farming
Even hill farmers who grow rubber extensively are moving away from rubber farming.
Farmers said that after spending and hard work, they get only loss.
In addition to rubber, cardamom, coffee, black pepper etc. are all facing a huge price drop. Apart from this, they have to bear the disturbance of wild animals. Farmers demand that central and state governments should intervene to increase the price of rubber.