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‘WHITE GOLD’ LOSES ITS GLAMOUR!

Diyarbakır Commodity Exchange President Engin Yeşil said that cotton, known as ‘white gold’, has lost its charm and that cotton producers will not be able to plant cotton next year in the face of prices.

Speaking at the Cotton Buying-Selling Session held at Diyarbakır Commodity Exchange (DTB), Engin Yeşil stated that the price per kilogram should not be below 29 TL for the continuity of production and that it is impossible to increase production at current prices.

Engin Yeşil

Yeşil pointed out that in order to hike the production of cotton, which is a strategic crop, subsidies should be enhanced and paid on time, taking into account input costs.

‘LET IT BE SUBSIDISED WITH SUPPORTS’

Yeşil emphasised that for the continuation of production in agriculture, the government should take into account the price hike in basic input costs such as seeds, fertilisers, pesticides, diesel oil and electricity and subsidise these costs with support and said, “While all costs from diesel oil to fertiliser, from seeds to pesticides have soared exponentially, the fact that the purchase price of agricultural products, especially cotton which has not increased this year has made the producers aggrieved. If this continues and the farmer’s losses are not compensated, planting will become impossible and production will stop.”

‘SWITCH TO CONTRACT PRODUCTION AND BOOST SUPPORT’

Yeşil also underlined that in order for farmers to plan for the future and continue cotton production, contracted production should be switched to and subsidies should be paid in advance. Yeşil stated that this will contribute to the increase in cotton cultivation area.

“The support price (premium) in cotton, which was 1.60 in 2022, remained unchanged at 1.60 TL this year. Premium support needs to be risen to at least 4 liras. The production cost of cotton in the region is around 23 TL per kilogram. Cotton, which was sold below cost last year, is sold below cost again this year and there is a concern that it will be sold below cost again next year. When we look at the input prices, diesel oil, which was 18 TL last year, has soared to 41 TL, fertiliser has surged from 8 thousand TL to 13 thousand TL; pesticides are the same… In other words, input prices have increased 3-4 times, but unfortunately neither the price of cotton nor the price of other agricultural products has surged in the same way,” Yeşil explained.

‘FARMER TO GIVE UP SOWING HIS FIELD’

Indicating that the income does not cover the cost, Yeşil added, “According to this, in order for the producer to make a profit, the sales price of seed cotton should be at least 29 liras. However, according to the current picture, the cotton producer is faced with sales at a loss. The income of the cotton planted by the farmer this year is not even enough for next year’s field preparation. Therefore, the farmer will have to give up planting his field.”

About İsmail Uğural

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