Agri Business

Covid-19 crisis: Crop protection firms seek exemption from lockdown

Our Bureau New Delhi | Updated on March 25, 2020

A consortium of crop protection firms on Wednesday requested the Centre that its member-companies should be allowed to function during the Covid-19 lockdown as availability of crop protection products is key to sustain continuity of food supply chain.

In a statement issued here, CropLife India — an industry association that represents 16 major crop science companies which enjoy nearly 70 per cent market share — said it was important to allow import, manufacture, distribution, transportation, storage and sale of agro-chemicals under the lockdown or curfew conditions as these inputs are critical for farmers to mitigate the substantial losses due to weeds, pests and diseases.

“We would like to urge the Government that potential measures put in place to promote social distancing, secure borders and guard against the spread of Covid-19 should not unintentionally cause disruption in the import, production, transport and availability of crop protection products and other agricultural inputs in the country,” said Asitava Sen, Chief Executive Officer, CropLife India, in the statement.

With the kharif season just round the corner, the next three months are critical for the farming community and hence all activities relating to agriculture inputs should be exempt from the lockdown, Sen added.

According to him, a few States such as Bihar, Haryana, Karnataka, Maharashtra, Punjab, and Uttar Pradesh have already issued notifications to this effect but there is a need to follow the guidelines in spirit so that the farmers will not suffer.

Published on March 25, 2020

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