Seed prices surge, impacts farmers in Chhattisgarh

Raipur | Correspondent: The Chhattisgarh Seed Corporation has significantly raised the prices of pulses, oilseeds, and paddy this year.

The price of paddy alone has jumped from Rs 576 to Rs 1056.

In addition to paddy, there has been substantial rise in the prices of pulses and oilseeds. The price of sesame seeds has seen the most significant increase, rising by Rs 4416, while the price of peanut seeds has gone up by Rs 2304. These price hikes will directly impact the farmers’ expenses.

With the new government, the ruling party increased the minimum support price (MSP) by Rs 3100. As the price of paddy rose, there was a simultaneous hike in the price of seeds and agricultural equipment.

The surge in seed prices has directly affected the farmers’ pockets. This year, the Seed Corporation has increased the prices of paddy, pulses, soybean, and other seeds.

In recent years, farmers have relied on market-provided seeds instead of producing their own, contributing to the rising seed prices.

Last year, coarse rice seeds were available at Rs 2688, but this year, they have increased to Rs 3264. Similarly, the price of thin rice seeds has risen from Rs 2880 to Rs 3744, and aromatic rice seeds have gone up from Rs 3264 to Rs 4320.

The price increases for various seeds are significant this year. Urad seeds have risen from Rs 9840 to Rs 12000, Mung seeds from Rs 9696 to Rs 10752, and Soybean seeds from Rs 7776 to Rs 7872.

Additionally, the price of Peanut seeds has increased from Rs 9120 to Rs 11424, Sesame seeds from Rs 14112 to Rs 18524, and Ramtil seeds from Rs 10608 to Rs 12480. The cost of Dhaincha seeds has gone up from Rs 8016 to Rs 9504, while Sunai seeds have seen an increase from Rs 7488 to Rs 11136.

Overall, the Seed Corporation has raised the price of each seed by more than Rs 500 per quintal.

Farming Work Accelerates

With the onset of rains, sowing activities have picked up pace across most areas of the state. Farmers are also preparing nurseries for transplantation.

By June, sowing activities were more than halfway completed in most areas of the state. However, some districts are lagging due to insufficient rainfall.

For the current Kharif season, a target of sowing various crops in 48.63 lakh hectares has been set. The Agriculture Department aims to distribute 9.78 lakh quintals of certified seeds for the Kharif crop this year.

Farmers’ Reactions

Farmers are expressing anger over the significant increase in seed prices by the Seed Corporation this year. They argue that the prices of seeds and fertilizers have increased much more than the support price of paddy.

In addition to seeds, farmers also need tractors, transplanters, fertilizers, and medicines for plowing. The prices of all these have also risen.

Farmers want to complete their work on time and thus use machines for plowing, sowing, harvesting, and threshing, which saves time.

However, some tasks still require laborers, who are not readily available and demand high wages. The wages for male laborers have risen to Rs 400 per day and for female laborers to Rs 250 per day.

Last year, paddy transplantation cost Rs 5,000 per acre, but this year it has increased to Rs 7,000. The hourly charge for tractors used for plowing has gone up from Rs 800 to Rs 1,000.

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