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Agriculture vetran returns to farming with renewed fervor Bhaskar Raju, a veteran farmer from A.P with his chilli crop
Bhaskar Raju with Camson's Vidyasagar in his chilli field

Agriculture vetran returns to farming with renewed fervor

Bhaskar Raju from Bhadrachelam district of Andhra Pradesh owns nearly 20 acres of land. He was a traditional cotton farmer but was not finding it remunerative to continue planting cotton due to high input costs and volatile cotton prices. Age not being on his side he had begun to shy away from agriculture. He had already given around 5 acres of his land to a contractor. His children were also not keen to continue the profession and were nudging him to relocate to the metro.

However, Bhaskar enjoyed farming and was in love with his profession. But the commercials of the industry and his family pressure were dragging down his morale. He wanted to motivate his children to continue agriculture with him.

He had known Ram Yadav, regional manager from Camson, for nearly a decade now and discussed his predicament with him. Ram was deeply moved by this old farmerís strong resolve to continue his profession and make it remunerative. Ram weighed the options and recommended Bhaskar shift 10 acres of his land to chillies. Camsonís spicy chilly Pennar was chosen based on the climatic conditions and strong market in the vicinity. Bhaskar had also planted chilies of other leading brands as a check. Ramís trusted lieutenant Vidysagar was entrusted the job of making this a success.

Ramís judgment proved right and Pennar delivered a bountiful yield. Much higher and much better than all check varieties that Bhaskar experimented with. Bhaskar was delighted and estimated a yield over 24-26 tonnes per acre with prices hovering around Rs.8,000-10,000 per tonne with an input cost of around Rs.25,000 per acre. His family was pleasantly surprised. His plot was visited by over 500 farmers on 26th January 2013 to congratulate him and learn from his success.

Bhaskar is expecting a net profit of Rs.15-22 lakh from pennar chilli planted on his 10 acre plot.

Today, Bhaskar stands over his field and vows to plough back all of his 20 acres of land next season. His family has decided to help him.

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