To foray into transportation also

A.J. Vinayak

The cooperative wants to generate revenue from other areas. It has introduced amendment to its bylaws to take up four farmer-related activities.

Mangalore, Sept. 28

With three decades of rich experience in procuring, processing and marketing of arecanut and cocoa, the Mangalore-based multi-state cooperative Campco is now planning to diversify its activities in other farmer-related areas such as organic manure production and transportation sector.

In this regard, an amendment to the cooperative's bylaw will come in for discussion at the annual general meeting of Campco (Central Arecanut and Cocoa Marketing and Processing Cooperative) on September 28. The board of directors has already approved the amendment.

Factors such as the demand for organic manure and the need for self-reliance in transporting the products of Campco to various destinations across the country have been cited as reasons for introducing amendment to the bylaw.

Mr S.R. Rangamurthy, Campco President, told

Business Line

that Campco wants to take the benefit of the Multi-State Cooperative Act, which allows it to promote separate institutions to carry out these activities.

With this, the cooperative wants to generate revenue from other areas.

The cooperative has introduced amendment to bylaws to take up four farmer-related activities.

ORGNAIC MANURE

Now farmers are using organic manure in a big way, and there is a good demand for it in the market. Many agricultural commodities grown using organic manure command higher price compared to those grown using chemical fertilisers.

"Considering this, we are discussing about providing organic manure to farmers. We have introduced this matter for bylaw amendment," he said.

TRANSPORTATION

Every year Campco sends around 40,000 truckloads of its products to northern India. Now the cooperative is dependent on others for its transportation needs.

"Apart from our goods, we can also handle goods of other cooperative agencies. Transportation is very much related to business.

There will be more security, if we have our own transportation system. So we thought why can't we take up transportation activity in cooperative sector and introduced amendment to bylaw," he said.

BANKING

Apart from these two activities, Campco has also introduced amendment to bylaws to take up banking activities and set up hydroelectric projects.

The cooperative, which has around 90,000 members, has collected around Rs 45 crore of deposits from farmers. "We thought that farmers will be benefited if we venture into banking activities, and introduced this amendment to bylaw," he said.

Welcoming this move of the cooperative, Mr M. Srinivasa Achar, President of the All-India Arecanut Growers' Association, said there was a need to raise huge resources to effectively market arecanut.

Campco needs to increase its share in arecanut market from the present 10 per cent to 25 per cent to have an effective say on the prices of arecanut.

Stating that Campco can raise huge resources if it ventures into banking activities, Mr Achar said this would expand the turnover of the cooperative. "The expansion in turnover will help the cooperative to strengthen the arecanut market," he said.

HYDEL

Considering the demand for electricity in rural areas, the cooperative is planning to make effective use of water resources available in its command areas. "We want to venture into hydro-electric projects as it will help farmers," he said.

Stating that these four proposals are in preliminary stages, Mr Rangamurthy said the 33 years of experience of the cooperative would be handy while taking up these farmer-related activities.

(This article was published in the Business Line print edition dated September 29, 2006)
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