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India: Last year’s tomato price crash affected acreage

While recently, the price of tomatoes has shot up owing to crop failure due to bad weather, the area under cultivation has come down. Tomatoes are mostly cultivated at Madukkarai, Thondamuthur and Kinathukadavu blocks in the district. They are now grown in 1,288 hectares here, down from 1,700 hectares three years ago.

One of the reasons for the decreasing cultivation acreage is the poor price tomatoes fetched a year ago. Last year, farmers dumped tomatoes on fields after the prices they fetched dropped. While the price has shot up due to tight supplies caused by widespread rain, not many farmers could reap the benefits owing to crop damage.

The horticulture department is trying its best to support tomato farmers, deputy director M. Bhuvaneswari said. “As per the data available with the department collated with the help of the revenue department, tomato crops on only 8.62 hectares were destroyed in rain this year. Most of the farmers are getting good returns,” she said. “Tomato farmers added 288 hectares in October alone.”

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