Extent of arecanut area inching towards one lakh hectares
The area under horticultural crops in Dakshina Kannada has increased by 28.38% in the last three years.
It is according to the crop survey done using the Crop Survey App. The data of the survey has been compiled jointly by the Departments of Agriculture, Horticulture, Revenue and Statistics.
The crop survey using the app was introduced on a pilot basis in the State during 2017-18 and stabilised from the next financial year. Prior to this the data of the area under crop was based on the statistics provided by the gram panchayats or village level revenue inspectors. The survey done using the app is being dubbed as more scientific as it is field based and synchronised with the IT tools.
According to the survey the total area under horticulture in the district went up by 38,796.18 hectares (28.38 %), from 1.36 lakh hectares in 2018-19 to 1.75 lakh hectares in 2020-21.
There was a steep increase in the area under banana (179.22 %), black pepper (157.16 %) and cashew (147.69 %). The area under cocoa has gone up by 62.69 %.
Being a major commercial/food crop, the area under arecanut has jumped by 3.29 % from 94,365 hectares to 97,467 hectares in the last three years. It appears that the extent of area under arecanut in the district is inching towards one lakh hectares. This is amid concerns expressed by the stakeholders that the expansion of area is likely to hit the prospects of the market stability in the near future.
According to the data, the area under arecanut stood at 39,396 hectares in 2017-18. It shot up by 54,969 hectares (139.53 %) to 94,365 hectares in the immediate next financial year (2018-19). In reality, pointed out a farm official, there was no large scale expansion of area under arecanut in just one year that is by 139.53%.
But the survey done using the App was more realistic and revealed the real extent of area under arecanut. Till then the assessment was based on the data provided by the village level revenue inspectors or gram panchayats which was usually based on “guesstimate”.
The same is in the case of other horticultural crops, the official told The Hindu.
The survey done using the App reveal that there was constant increase in the area under banana, black pepper, coconut, cashew and cocoa in the district in the last three years.
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