Sharmili Mallick

Bargarh: Despite good harvest of cauliflower, vegetable farmers of Bargarh are forced to go for distress sale like every year. The farmers of Jambruda village in the district are forced to dispose them at throwaway prices to traders because of lack of proper facility of cold storage to preserve their agricultural produce.

“The farmers in the village have cultivated cauliflowers in more than 1,000 to 1,200 acres of land. But due to the absence of cold storage facilities to preserve the vegetables, we are forced to sell the produce to the traders at low rates,” alleged a farmer, Gaurishankar Mirdha.

On the other hand, taking advantage of the situation, middlemen and traders are also offering farmers low prices and selling the produce outside the district at high rates.

“We primarily depend on cauliflower farming for our livelihood. If we sale the produce for Rs 20 per kg, we can make some profit out of it or else it becomes really difficult to even recover the cost of our labour,” said another farmer, Brundaban Pradhan adding that if a cold storage is set up in the district, the farmers would get benefited.

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Meanwhile, additional Collector of Bargarh district informed steps are being taken to establish a cold storage in the district soon.

“The proposal to set up a cold storage has been sent to the government for approval. We hope the project will be approved at the earliest,” said additional collector, Tapiram Majhi.