Training for areca farmers on using carbon fibre crooks from today

Central Arecanut and Cocoa Marketing and Processing Cooperative Ltd. (CAMPCO) and All India Areca Growers Association will impart training for three days to farmers and farm workers on the use of “dotis” (long carbon fibre crooks) in harvesting arecanut and also, on spraying fungicides on areca palms from Monday.

Training will be given in arecanut plantations of the Central Plantation Crops Research Institute (CPCRI), Regional Station, at Vitla.

The initiative is to meet the shortage of skilled manpower to climb up palms manually to harvest the produce and also spray fungicides.

According to CAMPCO, “dotis” can help carry out farm operations from the ground itself without having to climb up palms. By providing training, the cooperative and the association are planning to create a pool of manpower to handle these “dotis”.

Vice-President of the cooperative Shankaranarayana Bhat Khandige said that CAMPCO had conducted training programmes for planters and workers on how to climb up arecanut palms manually as a part of skill development in the sector a few years ago. Those who learnt the skill then are earning their livelihood with this skill.

However, there is still a fear among a majority of people to take up palm climbing as a profession. One of the reasons for this is the reported cases of people falling from trees in the past. Such people remain bed-ridden for life. He said that this and several other factors are keeping the youth away from taking up tree climbing as a profession.

Stating that the cooperative and the association are aiming to bridge the gap of skilled manpower for these activities with the help of these long carbon fibre crooks, Mr. Khandige said that interested youths can take up this as a profession to carry out the harvesting and spraying activities in arecanut plantations.

Immediate past president of the cooperative S.R. Satishchandra will inaugurate the training programme at 11 a.m. on Monday. Head of the CPCRI Regional Station C.T. Jose will be present. Executive Editor of Adike Pathrike Shree Padre will make introductory remarks.

Acting director of CPCRI, Kasaragod, Kerala, Anitha Karun will attend the valedictory function. There will be an interaction with heads of cooperative institutions on the occasion.

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