India: chilli farmers face threats from invasive pests and demand appropriate tech

The Rashtriya Kisan Progressive Association (RKPA) has asked the chili growers of Andhra Pradesh and Telangana to unite and jointly fight regulators that are blocking quality agri-input and advocate the usage of modern agri-tech practices to tackle invasive pests like ‘Thripsparvispinus’.

The RKPA has also appealed to the Chief Ministers, and administrators of the two Telugu states to set up a committee and a quick response team to save farmers even as the Association itself launched a mass campaign to educate and engage the public representative, anti-technology and anti-development forces.

The new invasive pest, ‘Thripsparvispinus’ has severely impacted the red chili crop in certain districts of the two states by affecting the plants at the flowering stage and stunting their growth. Heavy rains in the recent months have further compounded the problem.

Farmers are facing twin problems of spurious pesticides, as well as a lack of awareness regarding the proper usage of agrochemicals. “Besides the quality and right quantity, the timing of applying pesticide is also key for proper growth of the crop and tackle Thrips parvispinus. Use of modern technologies, including drones, robotics, and AI will help in uniform spraying of pesticides,” said the RKPA. Andhra Pradesh (43.5 percent) and Telangana (23.5 percent) account for over 67 percent of the country’s chili production, according to RKPA estimates.

Read the complete article at www.telanganatoday.com.


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