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Agra, Uttar Pradesh

Storage unit owners give Indian potato farmers a week to remove produce

In the Agra district, cold storage centre owners have issued an ultimatum to farmers to take away their stored potatoes within a week, failing which the centres would sell or otherwise dispose of the stored produce. Around 500,000 packs of potatoes, each weighing 50kg, are stored in cold storage centres of the Agra district. The last date determined by the district administration for withdrawal of potatoes stored at the cold centres was December 31. However, most of the 270 centres in Agra still have stock of potatoes stored in them.

Mohammad Aamir, general secretary of Potato Producers' Association said, "Cold storage centres have stopped preservation. Farmers have been asked to take away their produce within the next week. Farmers are not interested in taking away their produce due to prevailing low market rates. They are not even able to retain their investments. The government has failed to take cognizance of the matter."

Sudarshan Agarwal, president of the Cold Storage Association of Agra said, "Machines at the cold storages have been stopped. The entire facility needs proper cleaning and maintenance for the next crop. Around 500,000 packs of potato are still stored in the centres. Farmers have been requested to take them away within a week."

According to an article on¸ some farmers have decided to distribute their produce free of cost as mark of protest.

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