Gudiyattam farmers taking up cotton cultivation as the local cooperatives marketing society supporting them by supplying quality seeds from the South Indian Mills Association (SIMA), Coimbatore, and sells them to the farmers on a non-profit basis. Also their marketing which follows transparency and quick payment has motivated a large number of farmers.
Gudiyattam is emerging as a cotton hub, thanks to the support from the local cooperatives marketing society.
The farmer are happy with the handsome returns they get out of cotton cultivation, unlike other cash crops which demand lots of inputs, increased labour and low profits. Besides, the crop does not require much water and it grows well in the alluvial soil here.
J K N Palani, president of the Gudiyattam Taluk Agricultural Marketing Society, told Express that this year, around 3,000 farmer-families in Suralur, Erthangal and Mukundapuram areas near Gudiyattam have increased the area for cotton cultivation to 4,000 acres this year from 750 acres in the last two years,
The Society last year started direct procurement of the produce and there was a sales turnover of Rs.1.2 crore. This year, they are expecting around Rs.4 crores. In response to the initiative of the Society, the State government sanctioned funds for a shandy at Suralur, the second one in the district, which was inaugurated recently. Earlier they used to take the cotton to a shandy at Madapalli near Tirupattur where merchants from Tirupur, Rajapalayam, Pollachi and Erode were their customers. For this, they had to transport the cotton and wait for a few days for the payment. But now after the shandy at Suralur, they sell the crop on the spot and get paid by the Society immediately, said a farmer Natesan.
The merchants are invited to visit the farmersâ€™ fields and grade the quality before they could bid for the price at the shandy. The Society ensures the highest bidding price so that maximum benefits reach the farmers. If the farmers are not happy with the prices, they could sell their produce later for better returns.
Cotton brings us better returns, on an average; the profit is in the range of Rs. 30,000 per acre, said farmer Murugesan
The Society has plans to set up a spinning mill at Gudiyattam depending on the number of farmer taking to cotton farming.
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