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Unrevised prices cause Bt cotton seed production to fall

Feb '11
High production costs in Andhra Pradesh has caused the state's Bt cotton seeds production to fall by around 30 to 35 percent, as against the annual demand of around 45 million cotton seed packets, owing to which, the producers in the state could manage to supply only 35 million packets during the year, the National Seeds Association of India (NSAI) stated.

The State Governments generally fixes the price for these seeds, but here in spite of such a significant rise in the production cost, the government declined to revise its prices, last year.

However, the National Seeds Association of India (NSAI) is considering forwarding a request to the various state governments to revise the prices of Bt cotton seeds. It is to once again take up the issue to the state Chief Minister to seek his intervention in the matter. Prior to this, the NSAI walked to the CM with an urge to raise the Bt cotton seed prices by 30 percent in February 2010.

The Bt cotton seeds, presently are being sold at Rs 650 per packet for single and Rs 750 for double gene technology. The NSAI had urged the state government to raise this price to Rs 850 and Rs 1,050 per packet respectively.

Andhra Pradesh alone contributes 75 percent of the country's overall seed production, while employing around 2.5 million direct and indirect workers in the industry.

The Bt cotton seed market has a Rs 20 billion share in Rs 70 billion worth seed industry.

Also that, around 90 percent of the total cotton cultivation in the state is under Bt cotton. But then, this overall acreage under Bt cotton cultivation is also likely to come down if the companies keep on cutting down their production.

Fibre2fashion News Desk - India

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