SRIKAKULAM: Uddanam farmers are on cloud nine as coconut trade has started after over two months of lockdown.
They are transporting coconuts to Odisha and other Northern States as the hotels and temples would be opened on June 8.
The prices of coconut has declined due to the closure of temples and hotels - traders who purchased coconuts between Rs 16 and Rs 18 each before lockdown, are now paying Rs 13 each.
But the farmers are happy as at least they are able to sell their stock now.
Normally, Uddanam farmers export coconuts to Odisha, West Bengal, Uttar Pradesh and Delhi. With the closure of temples and hotels, there has been no demand for coconuts.
When compared to the two Telugu States, usage of coconuts in temples and hotels is more in the Northern States.
Wholesale traders at Kanchili village in Uddanam region procure the produce from farmers and ferry the same to Northern States. The Uddanam farmers have started selling the produce at lower prices to the wholesalers.
“I have sold three truckloads of coconuts to the wholesalers at Kanchili at Rs 13 each,” Gonapa Rambabu, a coconut farmer of Pedda Kojjiriya village, said. Speaking to TNIE, he said: “Due to the suspension of inter-state transport and closure of temples due to lockdown, we could not sell the produce for over 70 days.
"As the temples and hotels will be opened in a few days, the traders have started procuring coconuts from the farmers.”
He also said under the impact of cyclone, the yield of coconut had dropped by as much as 50 per cent. Praveen, another farmer, sold 15 truckloads of coconuts in the last few days.
Similarly, the wholesalers have started procuring coconuts from the Uddanam farmers after the curbs on inter-state transport were relaxed, he added.