National Research Programme on Plantation Development
Sponsored by Ministry of Commerce, Government of India
On the occasion of a national seminar on “Building Competitiveness in Globalised Era: Experience of India’s Plantation Sector” during 23-24 January 2012.
On 24 January 3:45 pm: Consultation with Stakeholders: Chaired by Mrs Sheela Thomas IAS and Dr A Jayathilak IAS(tbc). The issues for consultation: a) What does the plantation sector expect from the 12 Five year plan? b) what do we expect from the forthcoming state budget?
Dr.Nagesh Kumar, Chief economist, UNESCAP and Director UNESCAP for South and West Asia on NRPPD at CDS.
Dr.Nageshkumar.ogg (Download it to play)
The following major points (PDF) presented by me.
1. Need to change the visual Grading System.
The purchase and sale of rubber sheets can only be transparent by a computerised or hardware grading system. It will ensure the purchase and sale in the same Grade. The unknown “Green Book” is not a solution for grading. Dealers are making enormous profit under the pretext of visual grading system. They are purchasing on lower grades and selling the same on higher grades and prices. Form H and L submitting by the dealers to the Secretary Rubber Board can’t limelight the real marketing of rubber.
2. Rubber Statistics contain incomprehensible mathematical errors
By adding opening stock, production and import we will get the total availability. From the availability the subtraction of consumption and export the balance stock can’t tally without a missing figure. As per monthly statistical news Stock with Growers at the time of lower price was limited nearer to 30000 Tonnes and at higher price stock with farmers moves above 115000 Tonnes which is impossible.
3. Physiological Order of Rubber Trees
The system of the growth of a tree will provide the knowledge to avoid physiological disorder which is a reason for TPD. Eg. roots absorbs nutrients and water transport through Xylem and the leaves prepares carbohydrates through photosynthesis which consumes Carbon from carbon di oxide, oxygen and hydrogen from water, sunshine with the presence of magnesium in green coloured leaves. Phloem helps the carbohydrates to reach the roots to grow. As per the secondary thickening in dicot stem gaseous exchange through lenticells cork cambium splits as living cells to store food at phelloderm. Thus the flow of latex is from bottom to top and by the application of “Borax” on new bark with coconut oil can maintain the physiological order to avoid TPD which are from an experiments and experiences of a farmer.
4. Soil input to grow the trees
NPK is not a solution for the growth of trees. Nutrient mining from the soil for a long duration by a long term crop must be clarified by the analysis of soil samples from forests, rubber plantations and from other crops at various depth to confirm the truth. Dry leaves, sewage waste, cow dung, slurry etc through Aerobic Compost plant (Thumboormoozhi is an example) as organic manure can be applied to upper soil which is less expensive. It will help to avoid coliform bacteria and methane emulsion.
5. Over exploitation
The negative effects of over exploitation will cause stunted growth of trees, less life span and low economic gain. Stabilized drc of latex extraction will help the growth of tree including width of stem and long life with out new planting expense or interval for an economical gain.
6. Low priced Export
In August 2006 Pala Rubber Marketing society exported natural rubber at an average rate of Rs 2.11 per Kg when the price of RSS 4 at Kottayam was Rs. 92/Kg. Thus the details of Export including the name of exporter, date of export, quantity and grade of export, Value in INR must be published in the web site of Rubber board in spread sheets to avoid irregularities.
7. Consignment on Interstate transit
The Interstate transit took places with a period of delay up to one week. After getting an order for the interstate transit of 16 Tonnes of a load at higher price and the joint venture of bulk dealers can reduce the market price to get more profit to them within one week. After one week the price will go up. This means no transaction with the manufacturer done at the reduced price. The price game was with farmers and manufacturers.
8. Market prices
Market prices controlled by the Media including dealers price which is not covered by the Rubber Board. A Media related with a manufacturer can play a game for their profit which is harmful to other manufacturers. Rubber board covers only RSS 4, RSS 5, ISNR 20 & 60 % drc latex only. Prices of all grades have to be published daily by the Rubber Board. The monthly average price of Latex is entirely different from the daily price. Sale of latex per kg and the price including 40% other than rubber content is for the enormous profit of processors.
8. Consumption Ratio
Consumption ratio of NR and SR in India above 70:30 and the International ratio below 45:55. For an International standard of finished products India is away from it. India is in the 2nd position on consumption which reflects on the ratio of International consumption too.
9. Evasion of tax
Smuggling through the border of Kerala for the evasion of 4% VAT is beneficial to few manufacturers only. Thus tax can be levied from the farmers on the basis of average Annual production and average price to calculate on holding area of each farmer. Thus consignment of Rubber sheets and Latex can be transited to other States on free of tax which is beneficial to all manufacturers.
10. Weed Control
Chemicals and weedycides are harmful to the soil and earthworms and microbial fauna. Cover crop and grasses can be used to feed the livestock within the estate to avoid soil erosion. Soil erosion results in land infertility and leads to desertification and devastating flooding. To avoid nitrate poisoning to livestock due to less photosynthesis of the weed we can apply compost with balanced nutrients to upper soil. A package of practice recommendation has to evolve for this.“Nitrate in itself is not toxic to animals, but at elevated levels it causes “nitrate poisoning”. Nitrates are normally found in forages are converted by the digestion process to nitrite, and in turn the nitrite is converted to ammonia. The ammonia is then converted to protein by bacteria in the rumen. If cattle rapidly ingest large quantities of plants that contain high levels of nitrate, nitrite will accumulate in the rumen. Nitrite is ten times (10 X) as toxic to cattle as nitrate. Nitrite is absorbed into red blood cells and combines with hemoglobin (oxygen carrying molecule) to form methemoglobin. Methemoglobin cannot transport oxygen as efficiently as hemoglobin, so the animal’s heart rate and respiration increases, the blood and tissues of the animal take on a blue to chocolate brown tinge, muscle tremors can develop, staggering occurs, and the animal eventually suffocates.”High producing animals that thrive on such fodder usually dies .The dairy farmer faces a grave problem by this in most parts of the state.
Plantation sector expect from the 12 Five year plan to rectify the above points.
We expect from the forthcoming state budget for the control on evasion of taxes.
1. Summary of Export 2006-07
2. Details of Export of Pala Rubber Marketing Society (Two pages)
3. Analysis of Indian Rubber Statistics