Ginger production for the coming season (2019-20) is likely to be higher than the previous year with more area coming under the crop. Higher returns have prompted more farmers in Karnataka and Maharashtra to substitute maize,cotton and tobacco with ginger.
Ginger market is back on track and on an upswing with domestic production seen lower , traders said. Fresh ginger prices at the farm-gate in Hassan have spiked to Rs 70 per kg from a low of Rs 15-20 in year-ago period.
Mohammed Aiyaz,a young farmers and administrator of ginger growers group told FE the next crop be more than double with farmers putting more area under ginger.
Last year, excess rains led to lower yield and production. Better returns from ginger when compared to labour intensive tobacco has led more farmers to switch to ginger. Now, farmers in Karnataka and Maharashtra are growing ginger on their own and not preferring leasing to investors from Kerala.
Good returns from ginger in past few years due to robust demand prompted Kerala farmers to lease more land for ginger in Karnataka. Currently, Coorg,Shivamoga and Haveri in Karnataka are the happening place for ginger with land leases increasing substantially in Hassan district and its neighbouring places.
Wayanad and surrounding areas in Kerala, which accounted for bulk crop in the 90s, have seen ginger farming coming down rapidly due to labour shortage and higher input cost. But farmers from Kerala moved to nearby places in Karnataka in search for land and cheap labour. According to the data of the state-run Spices Board, Indian ginger production for 2017-18 in the advance estimate is pegged at 10,43,130 tonne .