Sri Lanka to give paddy dryers to help boost farmer incomes

ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka will provide mobile and fixed dryers for paddy farmers , who are now forced to sell their harvest at ad hoc discounts due to moisture content, the state information office said.

The cabinet of ministers had approved the proposal by President Maithripala Sirisena, made on a request of Economic Reform and Public Distribution Minister Harsha de Silva.

Sri Lanka’s Department of Agrarian Services will provide 05 farmer organizations dryers in co-operration with an association representing rice millers.

Each organization will get a 02 tonne mobile dryer costing three million rupees and a 05 tonne fixed dryer costing 06 million rupees.

They will be provided tax free.

The dryers will standardize the moisture content of paddy and help farmers get the set price for paddy.

At the moment paddy from mechanical harvesters which have a high moisture content are being discounted on ad hoc basis, Minister de Silva has said.

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The government is also working on a formula price based on moisture content he had said.

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Sri Lanka has heavy state interference in agriculture which is generally protected. (Colombo/Aug15/2019)