Sunday, February 05, 2006

Wine - Made in India

An article on Outlook: Some Get Toasted, related to the Vidarbha farming crisis.

According to the report, while cotton farmers of Vidarbha are suffering lack of support from government, increasing debts, rising cost of inputs, rip off from private moneylenders, suicides, dropping minimum rate etc., grape farming in the districts of Satara, Pune and Nasik are making big profits. Grape cultivations are supporting several wineries in these districts and examples of commercial farming and several companies are investing. Moreover, even the government is making efforts to increase investments, control prices etc, to support these wineries. A comparison of government initiative or lack of it, as reported in the article:
Grape Goodies:
  • Import duty on bottled wine raised from 100% to 150% to protect domestic producers .
  • Credit readily available from private and nationalised banks. Rate of interest 8%-12%.
  • Only 22,000 registered growers; 50,000 ha under grape cultivation.

    Cotton Woes:
  • Import duty lowered to 10 per cent, hitting local trade
  • Limited credit facilities. Rate of interest from private moneylenders as high as 120%.
  • As many as 20 lakh cultivators, only 20.8 lakh hectares under cultivation.
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