SRIKAKULAM: The recent cyclone hit the livelihood of hilltop farmers, who grow horticulture crops such as cashew, mango and pineapple in summer rather than paddy and other agriculture crops, in the tribal region. The cashew crop might have suffered about 30 per cent damage in the tribal region.
Savara Phalguna Rao, a tribal farmer of Konda Chorlangi village of Sambam panchayat in Seetampeta mandal, incurred loss due to the extremely severe cyclonic storm Fani as a large number of tender cashewnuts dropped off to the ground. Several farmers from the village suffered loss with damage to cashew crop. As many as 35 farmers are cultivating cashew and pineapple crop in an extent of 150 acres from the said tribal hamlet and they lost the livelihood under the cyclone impact.
“I have no alternative source except cashew cultivation in summer. With huge damage to the cashew crop, how I can lead my family,” he asked.
There are about 35 farmers in the village, each cultivating cashew and pineapple in an extent of not less than three acres, Savara Phalguna Rao, a cashew farmer, said. He also said due to gales during the cyclone, more than 60 per cent of tender cashew nuts dropped to the ground. “I have to maintain the family for at least six months depending on the earnings from the cashew crop. The cyclone has hit my only source of income,” he added.
Although no cashew trees were uprooted in the tribal region, cashewnuts fell to the ground in many areas
in Patapatnam, Mandasa, Seetampeta and other tribal areas, project horticulture officer Satyanarayana Reddy said.