A better deal for the farmer

APMC Market, Yeshwantpur: Better price realisation for agricultural commodities is a better incentive for farmers. The government of Karnataka has taken many steps for this purpose. One such initiative is to assure competitive prices for the commodity through Electronic marketing or e-Marketing by the Agricultural Produce Marketing Committees (APMCs).

The main objective of APMCs is to ensure that the farmers’ get good price for their commodity. Electronic marketing tender system of sale is an adoption of modern technology to ensure fair marketing process. The manual tender sale is usually a delayed process. Sometimes the commodity that reaches the APMC yards is huge, it takes up to late evening to finish the sales. Moreover farmers have to wait long especially due to heavy rain. So, Electronic marketing system was introduced to overcome such problems.

  “E-marketing is performed around 52-54 APMC markets. It connects the major markets of Karnataka”, says an Official from APMC yard. Under electronic marketing sale the farmers brings their commodity to the APMC yards. At the market gate, details of the commodities with farmers name and details, name of the commodity, approximate quantity, and name of the commission agent or trader’s shop where the commodity will be displayed for sale are recorded online.

Each commodity is given an identity. Thereafter the farmer takes the commodity to the commission agent. The licensed agent then inspects the product and quotes his price through the computer system. The agents are given a unique identification number. In this way the rates quoted by different agents are collected at the central server located in the APMC office. At a prescribed time, a senior official from APMC with open the system through a secret code given to him. The print out of the highest bidder is then given to the farmer and the agents. It is also displayed on the notice board. If the farmer agrees on the price, an agreement is made between the farmer and the commission agent. The commodity is then weighed, the farmer gets his money and can leave.

“Through this process the farmers’ gain good price realisation and are not cheated by the agents. The middle men or the commission agents also get benefitted by this method of sales”, says APMC official. This method is both beneficial to the farmer and the agent.

This method is mainly done for the sales of pulses. Perishable goods like potatoes, onions and vegetables are auctioned through manual tender sale method. The farmer gets the commodity to the APMC yard, auctions his produce to the highest bidder and leaves. Though the process is time consuming these commodities are still to be added to the electronic tender sales method. “Vegetables and perishable goods are not included in e-auction. Pulses were traded by open auctions but are now upgraded and traded by e-marketing process”, said Nagaraj, a farmer at the APMC yard.

-Pavani Kodati

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