Paddy lifting affected as gunny bags in short supply - ECAS Punjab

Paddy lifting affected as gunny bags in short supply

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Sukhmeet Bhasin

Tribune News Service

Bathinda, November 12

The shortage of gunny bags at purchase centres has hit paddy procurement in the region, leaving both farmers and commission agents worried.

With the freight train service suspended due to the farmers' protest, the Punjab Food and Civil Supplies Department has fallen short of gunny bales (one bale has 500 bags) for the ongoing procurement. Sources said more than 1,000 containers of gunny bales were stuck on railway tracks in and around Delhi.

"I have been at the mandi for the past six days. My produce is dry and within the prescribed moisture limit, but it hasn't been procured due to lack of gunny bags," said Makhan Singh, a farmer at Teona village in Bathinda.

As most bags were sourced from West Bengal, order had to be placed in advance to ensure supplies arrived in time. Punjab is the largest purchaser of jute bags every rabi and kharif season. Krishan Kumar, a gunny bag trader, said: "There is a shortage of gunny bags as the state government has increased the quota for rice millers to use gunny bags from 50 per cent (previous season) to 70 per cent. As jute mills in West Bengal remained shut during the lockdown, the supply was low this season."

BKU (Ekta Ugrahan) district president Shingara Singh Mann said: "The shortage of gunny bags is reported during the procurement season every year. Why can't the state government place orders in advance?"

from The Tribune

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