Plantain farmers elated due to bumper harvest, high returns
TIRUCHY: Plantain farmers from Thanjavur are elated as the price of a bunch has doubled due to Pongal festival and the harvest is on at full swing in the district.
Apart from cultivating paddy, Thanjavur farmers are also keen on raising banana and this horticulture crop has been cultivated in an area of 2,000 acres at Tiruvaiyaru, Gandiyur, Valappakudi, Vadugakudi, Achanur and the adjacent areas. More than 500 farmers and around 10,000 farm workers are involved in cultivating the crop.
Among varieties, poovan has been exported to places like Chennai, Tiruchy, Salem, Villupuram, Karur, Theni, Mannargudi, Nagapattinam, Chidambaram, Ariyalur and Perambalur while varieties like elakki and nendran are sent to other states including, Kerala, Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh and also to a few districts of Tamil Nadu.
Since consumption of banana bunches would be more during the Pongal festival season, the harvest of bananas has commenced in the district. Owing to the high demand, the farmers also get a profitable pricing. “A bunch of poovan sold at Rs 300 in the month of December, has been sold at Rs 600 now,” says M Mathiazhagan, banana farmer from Vadugakudi.
He said that the farmers got a bumper harvest this time and the demand is very high and so it is being sold at a decent pricing. He adds that Cyclone Mandous spared the Delta region and the region is now the highest supplier this time.
“As there is a huge demand, the price has shot up that benefited the farmers,” he says and adds that at least 10,000 bunches are being transported each day to the other districts from the Delta region.