Reduction in kuruvai cultivation area may lead to rice shortage

While paddy production has been deteriorating due to water shortage and failure of seasonal rainfall every year, the fate of Kuruvai cultivation is severely hit in Delta this year.
Representative Image
Representative Image

Thiruchirapalli

Despite officials encouraging the farmers to undertake kuruvai under special package, the farmers are skeptical about it. This has resulted in the cultivation acreage shrinking to almost 50 per cent compared to previous year. And this may lead to rice short storage that necessitating import from neighbouring states. 
Meanwhile, the officials, have recommended the farmers to undertake CO-51 variety paddy - a short term crop developed by Tamil Nadu Agricultural University, which has a crop cycle of 110 days with a minimal water requirement. The major delta region like Nagapattinam, Tiruvarur and Thanjavur had witnessed remarkably less acreage despite the announcement of special package. For instance, in Thanjavur the kuruvai has been taken up in 28,000 acres where as it was 88,933 acre in 2016. Similarly, in Tiruvarur, the cultivation area is 37,850 acre (75,000 acre in 2016), Nagapattinam 55,000 acre (91,000 acre in 2016) and in Tiruchy 800 acre (1000 acre in 2016).
According to the officials, the rice production from delta has been reduced to 20 per cent for the past five years for various reasons especially the drought condition. According to data available with the agriculture department, Thanjavur produced rice between 4 and 5 lakh metric tonnes in 201516, but it was reduced to 72,756 metric tonnes in 2016-17. Similarly, Tiruvarur district produced 5 lakh metric tonnes in 2015-16, but in 2016-17 it has been reduced to 1.11 lakh metric tonnes. Similalry, Nagapattinam district produced 3/16 lakh metric tonne in 2015-16, but in 2016-17 it was declined to 16,235 tonnes.

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