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Karnataka to fix cocoon support price
May '11
In view of the sharp fall in silk cocoon prices, the Karnataka government has assured that it would fix a support price for cocoon very soon.

Owing to a rise in supply of the commodity and import of silk from China after the Centre reduced the import duty from 30 percent to five percent in 2011-12, the cocoon prices have dropped from Rs. 350 per kg to Rs. 100 per kg, Karnataka's Sericulture and Labour Minister BN Bache Gowda said.

The Minister assured that he would discuss the issue of support price with Chief Minister BS Yeddyurappa and get the minimum support prices fixed within a few days.

The Karnataka Silk Marketing Board (KSMB) would be provided a sum of Rs. 150 million to purchase cocoons from market, because farmers spend almost Rs. 180 to produce one kg of cocoon, and hence their interest needs to be taken care of, Gowda said.

Recently, the sericulture farmers from Kolar, Ramanagaram and other regions staged protests and blocked roads while seeking government intervention for getting the previous prices restored.

The Minister apprised that a delegation would head to Delhi and call upon Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee to get the import duty restored at original 30 percent levels to hold back the silk imports from China.

Gowda further said that, cocoon prices fell due to a drop in raw silk prices which plummeted from Rs. 2,600 to Rs. 1,800 per kg. The cocoon farmers last year earned Rs. 300 to 350 per kg of cocoon.

The government in February 2011 released Rs. 120 million to KSMB to procure 60 tons of cocoons from the 62 cocoon markets that the State houses.

Rise in area under mulberry cultivation and an approximate 30 percent rise in cocoon supply due to good production, has led to a drop in cocoon prices in leading sericulture hubs in Karnataka.

Fibre2fashion News Desk - India

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