Cardamom

Weather helps boost Indian cardamom crop

FAVOURABLE weather in the cardamom producing regions of the southern Indian states of Kerala and Tamil Nadu is likely to see cardamom production for fiscal 2008/09 touch the 13,000-tonne mark, according to farmers.

This would be a substantial improvement on the 2007/08 crop, which has been pegged at 6,500 to 7,000 tonnes, 40% lower than that of 2006/07, due to erratic weather. All major production centres in Idukki district were severely affected due to a prolonged dry spell in 2007.

A typical summer rains thisMarch have worked positively and, with the prediction of a normal monsoon, farmers are looking at substantially higher production than last year.

“The plantations are looking good; and with incessant monsoon rains, production could be higher by 50% in the Idukki region, ” said K Devassia of the Cardamom Growers’ Association. “The new crop production in Idukki alone would be above 8,000 tonnes.” P John of the district agricultural office in Idukki added that the major producing regions of Idukki had received good showers this season and prevailing high prices had helped farmers take good care of the plantations.

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