State President of Tamil Nadu Small and Marginal Farmers Association KR Suthanthirarasu appealed to the government to fix minimum support price (MSP) of Rs 8000 per ton for tapioca for coming cultivation season.
He said that cassava is widely grown in Erode, Namakkal and Salem districts.
Harvest is from August to April.
Due to the lack of prices for cassava, a tripartite meeting was held in December last year under the chairmanship of Erode District Governor C. Kadiravan and Rs 6,000 was fixed as procurement price.
However, the sago mills offered low prices due to variety of reasons including quality.
At present, at the end of the harvest, they offered Rs. 6,500 to 7,000.
Now, harvest was going on in Sathy, Kadambur (Erode district), Kollimalai and Karumanthurai ( Namakkal district).
Farmers there are likely to benefit from this price hike.
However, due to the high incidence of mealy bug disease in these areas, the yield is low.
This will reduce their profit much.
In Erode district, the farmers are worried that there will be more pest attack in the current year as well.
Therefore, the Department of Agriculture should provide necessary assistance to farmers during cassava planting and take steps to control pest infestation, he pleaded.