Friday 18 May 2012
Cotton farming doubles
The cotton acreage in the state has doubled in the last one decade while area for food-grain production has come down, shows state agriculture department's data.
Almost 33 per cent of total 89 lakh hectares is under cotton cultivation.
This year's cotton acreage is a little above 30 lakh hectares.
According to experts, the cotton cultivation is expected to go up further next season if the recent decision of the Central Government to allow export under the open general license (OGL) is allowed to continue.
Both the Congress and the BJP are pressing for continuation of OGL for cotton as the December 2012 Assembly elections in the state is approaching fast.
The officials in the state agriculture ministry said the main reason for the increase of acreage under cotton was the availability of Bt cotton seeds as these are “resistant to pests and insects, and increase the productivity and better prices”.
Bt cotton's resistance to attack of pests and insects also brings down the cost of production as farmers need not spend much on pesticides to protect the crops, experts said.
State Agriculture Minister Dileep Sanghani claimed that extension of irrigation facilities like taking Narmada water to the farmers' fields in districts like Vadodara, Anand, Kheda and Surendranagar, and similar facilities developed in some of the areas in north Gujarat districts further encouraged farmers to go for cotton cultivation.
However, officials in the state agriculture department said good monsoon in the last one decade coupled with water conservation projects helped growth of agriculture in the state.
Source: Argentine Beef Packers S.A.
Back to News Headlines