Trader cum farmer finds sweet corn more profitable than other crops
‘Initially sweetcorn was grown as intercrop for earning additional income but it became more profitable than other crops! Within 4months we could harvest sweet corn. Demand of sweet corn always exceeds the supply therefore price appreciation is more than other crops,” says Mr. Srishailaparappa Sankartti Handigund, farmer cum trader of chemical agri inputs. His 40 acre farmland is irrigated land located at Handigund village, Belgavi district, Karnataka.
Being part of agriculture community, slowly and gradually he has multiplied his farm acreage and now grows multiple crops. “I grow sugarcane (15-20 acre), turmeric (3-5 acre), banana (3-4 acre), vegetables (1-1.5acre) namely tomato, brinjal, green chilies, cluster beans, beans, wheat (1-1.5acres, kaveri and jawari variety), Bengal gram, groundnuts, sweet potato, carrot,” he informs. Vegetables are only grown organically rest all other crops are cultivated through chemical farming practices.
It is ideal to grow sweet corn in June for best yield. “Sweet corn and turmeric were grown simultaneously in June. Sweet corn is harvested after four month while turmeric is harvested after 8.5 months. Sweet corn can be sown anytime in case of sugarcane,” he states.
Sharing the details on sweet corn and turmeric cultivation, he says, “First the land is tilled properly after applying cattle manure. Beds are prepared leaving the channels. The soil is fed with DAP and irrigated with water. Sweet corn seed is sown in the channels and turmeric rhizomes on the beds. We give water through drip on the beds and moisture from the bed is utilized by sweet corn in the channel. After a month we give chemical fertilizer like urea, complex 26:24:24, Neem hindi, DAP, Potash etc. Weeding is done manually as required. We leave the land for slight drying and then add urea again and complex 26:24:24. We give fertilizers when required. We spray Roger, cofidor, neem oil as pesticides. It is all as per the guidance from KVK.”
Two varieties of sweet corn are grown alternatively namely jawari and dekalb in the farm. 2kg sweet corn seed were sown in two acre that yielded 20 ton. Cost of seeds varies from Rs.900-1100/kg. By and large sweet corn is free from diseases or pests. One plant yields only one sweet corn thus after every harvest farmer has to go for the next cycle. Post harvesting sweet corn the left over plant makes nutrient rich fodder for the cattle.
Traders buy entire farm produce from the farm gate accept sugarcane that is sold to the sugar factory.
“The traders come for auction of the produce. Whoever bids maximum we sell the produce to them. Sweet corn is sold to traders from Mumbai, Belgaum, Vijapura etc. Turmeric is sold at Sangli (Maharashtra) at Rs. 7500-10000/quintal (depending upon the grades). Sugarcane, 86 variety, is sent to sugar factory in Sahidapura (Belgaum district). It is sold at Rs. 2500/ton. Earlier we were producing jaggery but discontinued due to labour problem. In our farm sugarcane production is 800-900 ton and turmeric produced is 35-40quintal per acre,” shares Mr. Srishailaparappa.
He concludes, “I am cultivating sweet corn from past 10years. It had always been a profitable crop. A crop like this helps in farm endurance.”
Mr. Srishailaparappa Sankartti Handigund
Raibagh Taluk, Belgavi District, Karnataka