Price dip chills farmers’, traders’ gills

Sankhuwasabha, December 10:

The cardamom business inSankhuwasabha district has been hit due to the decline in

price for the past one week. Things are pretty glum, especially in business centres like Khandbari, Chichila, Num, Hedangnagadhi Barhabise, Chainpur, Pokhari Bazaar, Mude Sanishchare and Tutedeurali.

According to cardamom traders, the slump occurred after the price fell to Rs 7,000 from

Rs 8500 per kg. Business used to be over 2000 kg a day but now it is just 150-160 kg per day, a Khandbari-based cardamom trader Suman Shrestha said. He added that cardamom had stopped selling to traders after the price slump.

Small traders, particularly, have been hit hard. A cardamom trader of Pawakhola,

Gyanendra Gurung, said he had to suffer a loss of Rs 1 lakh since he had purchased cardamom when the price was high. “If the market price does not improve, many petty traders like will be ruined, he said.

Traders aren’t the only ones worried. farmers are equally restless. Not only has price fallen, production also has decreased. Num-based cardamom farmer Num Nar Bahadur Tamang said the cardamom yield had decreased by 40 per cent in comparison to last year. He said farmers were unable to even recover raise their investment. Last year, the farmers had sold cardamom at the rate of Rs 10,500 per kg.

The yield declined especially in Matsyapokhari, Makalu and Num this year. Last year, 1600 metric tonnes of cardamom were exported from the district. Sankhuwasabha stands second as a cardamom producing district of the country.