Kerala has always been a proponent of fair and equitable practices to be followed across various walks of life. To live up to their standards, the Kerala government launched the Basic Price scheme, thereby becoming the first state to launch the scheme in India.
The Basic Price scheme 2020 is meant to be for Vegetables and other listed crops from the 1st of November 2020. According to this scheme, the state government of Kerala has decided to fix a basic price for a variety of vegetables and some other locally grown perishable produce.
This scheme is an attempt to ensure price stability and an assured income for farmers who are facing the brunt of lockdown more than those from the middle-class segments of the society. The basic price for around 16 farm commodities will come into effect from the 1st of November after the cabinet discussed it in their meeting on the 21st of October 2020.
Commodities included in the Basic Price Scheme 2020
The commodities included in the Basic Price scheme of 2020 are bananas, tapioca, cucumber, snake gourd, bitter gourd, ash gourd, tomato, lady’s finger, cabbage, carrot, potato, beans, beetroot, garlic and pineapple.
These commodities will now be available at a definitive base price which are decided by the committee specially appointed for the same. The price would be determined on the basis of production and productivity of the common varieties of those commodities.
Implementation of the scheme
The Basic Price Scheme in Kerala comes right when it was needed the most. The price would be implemented by the State Agriculture dept with the support of Local bodies and the State cooperation department. All the crops would ideally be procured by wholesale village markets which would be run by primary agricultural cooperative societies and government agencies as the Vegetable and Fruit Promotion Council Kerala (VFPCK) and the HORTICORP.
An entire market is to be opened in every panchayat for the benefit of farmers and consumers alike, across the state of Kerala.
How does basic price prove to be better than production cost?
The Basic Price scheme is meant to assure farmers of a decent basic price whenever the market price of farm commodities tends to fall below it. The basic price of commodities would at least be 20 percent more than the production cost incurred by the farmers.
The Kerala government intends to help farmers and protect them from the massive price fluctuations in the market price. Through this scheme, the Kerala government also aims to provide a boost to the vegetable production in the state.
With the implementation of the Basic Price scheme, farmers all around the state can be surer about the amount they would be making by selling off their produce. Market fluctuations would no longer affect farmers and consumers alike, as they would manage to procure produce at the same base price, thereby leading to smarter consumers and more financially stable farmers, ending up to be a win-win for all in the long run.