Pakistan: Outlook for the next potato crop

As potato sowing nears in Punjab, farmers’ early hopes are positive for the crops’ production and trade. After two years of financial grilling, they hope, though still cautiously, to be compensated to some extent in the coming season. Their optimism has reasons. Firstly, hit by a glut in the market for the past two years, many small farmers have opted to sow other crops. This may impact the overall production, reduce supply and stabilise the market. Because of bumper crop, the prices had fallen to Rs2/kg at the farm level in 2014-15. The second factor that creates optimism among farmers is the upcoming infrastructure in the core potato belt. In the last few years, many washing houses and spraying process setups have cropped up in central Punjab. Farmers are gathering for their annual meeting in the last week of September in central Punjab to plan the crop according to emerging trends. More