Puttur: Most areca growers have banana plantations which work as subsidiary crop, giving them some respite during difficult times, especially when areca prices decline in the market.
However, post demonetisation, the prices of bananas too have fallen by Rs 8 per kg on all varieties including Kadali, Nendhra Bale,Mysuru Bale and Gali Bale with current prices being Rs 11, 32 , 10 and 12 respectively per kg.
The reason for decline is attributed to small traders finding difficulty in giving change for Rs 2000 currency notes and at the same time, the lack of festivals in the near future.
Due to severe fluctuation in prices, traders are not coming forward to buy the produce from the growers. Ripe bananas cannot be preserved like areca and pepper for long and hence most traders are not willing to take the risk and incur losses.
Puttur and Sullia taluks have many areas under banana cultivation with growers from Kerala operating in plantations on lease basis to make quick profits. Banana crop usually takes around 10 months to yield and most growers and traders had made huge profits during festive season due to spiraling prices prior to demonetisation.