K'taka farmers' body warns milk federation not to procure feed from middlemen


Bengaluru, Oct 10 (IANS) One of the prominent farmers' organisations in Karnataka -- Hasiru Sene (Green Brigade) -- on Saturday warned the Karnataka Milk Federation (KMF) against procuring corn from middlemen instead of directly from farmers.

Giving a fortnight's time to the KMF, the Green Brigade warned that if the KMF fails to start procuring from farmers directly by remitting the Minimum Support Price (MSP), the farmers will launch a statewide "Chakka Jam" (Road Blockade).

Speaking to IANS, Hasiru Sene state president Kodigehalli Chandra Shekhar said that the KMF procures as much as 4,500 lakh tonnes of corn to be used as feed for cattle across the state. All these years, the KMF used to procure this corn from the farmers directly.

He added that the KMF this year had started operating through middlemen to procure such a huge quantity of corn. As a result of this, farmers in the state will be adversely affected.

"The Green Brigade cannot afford to ignore such a thing. Hence, we have decided to give them (KMF) a fortnight's time to reverse their decision. Otherwise, we will be forced to launch a statewide agitation in all district headquarters to highlight this issue," he warned.

He added that the state government should also take steps to procure corn or other food crops which are used for poultry feed directly. "The poultry industry across the state needs 1.5 lakh tonnes of feed annually. Hence, the state government should also take steps to procure feed directly from farmers," he said.

He pointed out that the state had received 20 per cent excess rainfall due to which several crop yields have been better compared to previous years.

The farmer leader added that this year's Ragi, paddy, tur dal, cotton seeds and oil seeds yield is expected to be higher than previous years, hence, the state government should take steps in this regard for procurement.




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