Erratic weather has farmers wary

Archit Watts

Tribune News Service

Muktsar, March 14

Due to the prevalent inclement weather, the harvesting of wheat crop may get delayed by a week. The harvesting season is set to begin from April 1, but the crop is expected to arrive at the grain markets around April 20.

Some farmers said frequent changes in the weather, mainly the showers, would delay the harvesting by a week this time. “There is no loss to the crop from mild showers, but if the rain is accompanied by winds, it may harm the mature crop,” a farmer said.

The farmers said normally the harvesting began in the second week of April. “The recent spell of rain has increased the moisture content in the grain, so it may take some more time to ripe. The rain accompanied by high-speed wind had last month flattened the crop in some patches,” said Ranjit Singh, a farmer.

Baljinder Singh Brar, Chief Agriculture Officer, Muktsar, said, “The harvesting may get delayed by a few days, but it won’t have any impact on the overall season. As of now, there is no report of any loss to the standing crop.”

Some farmers, however, said the mild rain was beneficial at this stage as they would not have to use canal water to irrigate the fields.

Agriculture experts said if it rained in the coming days, then it might even cause a glut in mandis after April 20. “The farmers will bring their produce in a hurry once the harvesting season starts, thus it may put extra burden on procurement process,” an official said.

Meanwhile, some kinnow growers said today’s rain was not beneficial for the fruit. “The rainfall at this stage is not beneficial for kinnow as the variation in temperature will increase fruit dropping, which will result in loss,” a grower said.

No loss: official

The harvesting may get delayed by a few days, but it won’t have any impact on the overall season. As of now, there is no report of any loss to the standing crop. —Baljinder Singh Brar, Chief Agriculture Officer, Muktsar

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