Price hikes ease Jaffna farmers' burden

[TamilNet, Saturday, 28 August 2004, 10:50 GMT]
Despite unfavorable market conditions, prices of onions have increased from a July low of Rs.12 per kilo in Colombo markets, to a respectable Rs.40 to Rs.50 per kilo, according to traders dealing with perishable goods. Market watchers earlier warned that unplanned cultivation and increasing use of artifical fertilizers in Jaffna would result in oversupply leading to plunging market prices.

Onion Farming
Kandiah Paranjothi, an onion farmer from Udupiddy, Jaffna
Kandiah Paranjothi (55), an onion farmer from Udupiddy located 20 km northeast of Jaffna, who owns a plot along the Udupiddy-Thondamannar road, says his field produces nearly 50 hundred-weights (hundred-weight=112 lbs) of onions per season. He expects to earn close to Rs.100,000 per season with the current market prices.

Onions are cultivated twice per year in Jaffna, December-February and again in June-August. Farmers depend on water from wells for irrigation.

Approximately 45% of the revenue is used for fertilizers according to Paranjothi's estimate. Assuming 15% for kerosene for his water pump and additional labor-help during harvesting, a typical onion farmer is left with about Rs.80,000/- a year to make a living.

Paranjothi is one of the lucky ones. He was able to return back to farming his field after being displaced for four years in Visvamadu in Vanni. He eked out a living there but returned soon after the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed between the Government of Sri Lanka and the Liberation Tigers in 2002. His field is located several miles outside the High Security Zone (HSZ) and he did not suffer the fate of many other farmers who are still struggling to recover their land.

"My only worry now is to get my daughter married," said Paranjothi when asked how he viewed the current peace climate. "She has received proposals but does not want to go abroad. I would like to have her settled when things are normal," he added.
Onion Farming
Onion fields along Udupiddy-Thondamannar road
Onion Farming
Bunch of onions discarded from inclusion in the main marketable lot, used for local consumption or local sale.



Onion Farming
Kerosene powered water pump irrigating onion field

 

Latest 15 Reports
23.08.19 07:04  
SL Forest Department remains unmoved by uprooted Tamils’ demand for resettlement
22.08.19 06:50  
40 parents of missing persons die within 915 days of protest
21.08.19 18:17   Photo
‘Death certificates’ issued to 500 of 3,500 Tamils subjected to enforced disappearance in Ampaa'rai
20.08.19 20:23  
Wigneswaran warns of bleak future for Tamils, urges planning for next step
19.08.19 19:23   Photo
IC sheds crocodile tears over Shavendra appointment, US engages with his war-time chief
18.08.19 23:50   Photo
SL TID detains outspoken Tamil doctor at Pazhai hospital
17.08.19 23:08   Photo
SLA Jaffna commander refuses to release Palaali lands at meeting presided by Wickramasinghe
16.08.19 13:25   Photo
SL Archaeology Department resumes plans to construct controversial ‘chaitya’ at Koonith-theevu
15.08.19 21:39  
Wickramasinghe lacks courage to meet protesting Tamil mothers in North
14.08.19 23:31   Photo
2006 genocidal massacre at Chengchoalai campus marked in Vanni, Jaffna amidst PTA-threats
13.08.19 17:45   Photo
Tamil awareness urged on geopolitics-driven genocidal ‘development’ in Mannaar
12.08.19 20:04   Photo
Percival's 19th century Tamil proverb compilations collated and sorted in new publication
11.08.19 20:32   Photo
PTA-threats against constructing memorial arch for student victims of 2006 aerial massacre
10.08.19 22:49   Photo
Sinhala encroachers storm into 100 acres of lands at Kanneeraavi in Pulmoaddai
09.08.19 14:28  
SL Forest Department retains 8,034 hectares of pasturelands in Paduvaan-karai, Batticaloa
 
Find this article at:
http://www.tamilnet.com/art.html?catid=13&artid=12756