Asia, India, China, Middle East, Cultivation/Production

Farmers in India try liquor sprays to boost potato crop yield; replace pesticides

Driven by popular belief that it is a practice that works, farmers in Uttar Pradesh state in India are reportedly spraying their crops with liquor – mainly potatoes and sugarcane.

They pour liquor in their spraying machines, mix it with water and spray it on the crop – which they believe increases the size of the potato considerably and matures the crop in a shorter period of time. According to farmers, liquor works as an insecticide on the cane crop.

While the agriculture department authorities have dismissed the notion that alcohol can help in potato production in any way, farmers are gung-ho about it.

Lokesh Sharma, a farmer in Bohich village of Bulandshahr, said, “One quarter of a country-made bottle of liquor is sprayed on potato crop spread in 6 bighas. A quarter costs me Rs 50, and I have 10-acre land – so the cost comes to some Rs 500. This helps in increasing the size of the potato and the crop takes less time to mature.”

Farmers in Uttar Pradesh’s Bulandshahr area have been facing a crisis due to the low prices they get for their produce in the market.  The condition of farmers is not exactly desirable and they keep coming up with new experiments and techniques to improve their produce and get a better price in the market.

Read the full story on The Times of India as well as Latest LY

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