Reliance seals Karnataka rice deal, to pay above MSP – Report

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Paddy field – Photo: Manish Chack
By Asia Samachar Team | INDIA |

One of the first sizeable transactions for between a large corporate entity and farmers took place in Karnatak for a deal to purchase 1,000 quintals of Sona Masoori paddy from the farmers of Sindhanur taluk in Raichur district.

The deal involving Reliance Retail Ltd comes after the amendment to the APMC Act in Karnataka, reports TNN.

It also comes at a time when hundreds of thousands of farmers have converged at a number of highway entry points to Delhi, protesting against the three farm laws rushed through parliament in September 2020 by the BJP-led government.

Around a fortnight ago, agents registered with Reliance signed an agreement with Swasthya Farmers Producing Company (SFPC). Though SFPC primarily trades in oil, the firm now has ventured into procurement and sale of paddy; close to 1,100 paddy farmers have registered with it. Reliance Retail stipulated that there should be less than 16% moisture in the crop. Moreover, the company is offering Rs 1,950 per quintal of Sona Masoori, which is Rs 82 more than the minimum support price (MSP) for the crop set by the government (Rs 1,868), according to the report.

It added that the understanding between SFPC and the farmers entitles the former to a 1.5% commission for every Rs 100 transaction. The farmers have to bear the expenses of the sacks used to pack the crop and transporting it to the warehouse in Sindhanur.

SFPC MD Mallikarjun Valkaldinni said that the quality of the paddy currently stored at the warehouse will be tested by a third party, the report added.

The report quoted Karnataka Rajya Raitha Sangha and Hasiru Sense president Chamarasa Malipatil as saying corporate entities would entice the farmers by offering more than the MSP initially, which would deal a severe blow to the APMC mandis.

“But later, corporate companies will start exploiting the farmers. We must be wary of such tactics,” he said.

 

RELATED STORY:

Huge tractor rally ahead of 8th round of government-farmers talks tomorrow (Asia Samachar, 7 Jan 2021)

BJP’s farming policies: Deepening India’s agrobusiness capitalism and centralisation (Asia Samachar, 18 Oct 2020)

 

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