Garlic most profitable crop for Nepali farmers

- Post Report, Kathmandu

Sep 11, 2015-

Garlic yields the highest profit margin compared to other vegetables and cereal crops, according to the statistics of the Ministry of Agricultural Development.

The figures show that growing garlic is 70 times more profitable than paddy and 17 times more profitable than potato.

A farmer in the hills earns Rs1.39 million per hectare from garlic, while in the Tarai region, the profit is Rs1.04 million per hectare. In contrast, a farmer in the Tarai makes a net profit of Rs18,273 per hectare from paddy. In the hills, the net profit from paddy is Rs14,603 per hectare.  

The total cost of production of garlic in the hills and Tarai is Rs284,332 and Rs255,188 per hectare respectively. Likewise, the productivity of garlic in the hills and Tarai is 18,637 and 17,214 kg per hectare respectively.

“Garlic has a high value compared to many vegetables. As farmers in Nepal cultivate garlic on small plots of land, it requires little labour. As a result, its rate of return is high,” said Yubak Dhoj GC, director general of the Department of Agriculture. 

Garlic fetches Rs140-150 per kg in the wholesale market. According to him, despite such huge profits, there is no commercial farming of garlic in the country. It is used mainly as a flavouring for food and as a health food.

After garlic, ginger and tomato among vegetable and spice crops yield the highest rate of return to farmers. The stats show that the net profit from ginger and tomato comes to Rs327,929 and Rs302,521 per hectare respectively.

The cost of production of ginger is Rs563,232 per hectare, the

highest among all cereal, vegetable and spice crops. Despite the

high production cost, farmers make a net profit of Rs327,929 per hectare due to its high market value. Farmers produce 19,867 kg of ginger per hectare.

Ginger is also one of the high value crops with export potential. Nepal produced 255,208 tonnes of ginger in 2012 to retain the position of the world’s third largest producer after India and China.

Nepal’s ginger output jumped 17.99 percent in 2012. Agro experts said that the increased production was due to swelling market demand for this spice.

All of the country’s tomato output is consumed domestically, and demand is growing at a fast rate. Cauliflower and cabbage, which are the most popular vegetables in Nepali kitchens, also yield handsome returns.

The stats show that in the hills, farmers make a net profit of Rs169,150 per hectare from cauliflower while in the Tarai the profit is Rs262,992 per hectare.

Likewise, the net profit from cabbage stands at Rs295,661 per hectare in the hills and Rs176,003 per hectare in the Tarai region.

However, the potato grown in the Tarai yields a smaller profit compared to other vegetables.

The stats show that farmers

make a net profit of Rs77,629 per hectare in the Tarai and Rs151,225 per hectare in the hills.

According to GC, a majority of farmers are involved in commercial vegetable farming due to its quick and handsome returns compared to other crops, and the trend is growing at a fast rate.

With regard to cereal, the wheat produced in the mountain region gives the highest net profit of Rs72,919 per hectare. However, the cost of production of wheat in the mountain region is also the highest at Rs75,256 per hectare. Farmers make a net profit of Rs18,273 per hectare from paddy on irrigated land in the Tarai. The total cost of production of paddy stands at Rs48,669 per hectare. 

Meanwhile, the maize produced in the hills yields the lowest profit. The stats show that farmers earn a profit of Rs8,220 per hectare in the hills while the cost of production is five-fold higher at Rs43,643 per hectare compared to the net profit.

However, in the Tarai,

farmers earn a profit of Rs17,764 per hectare. The cost of production of maize in the Tarai is Rs43,283 per hectare.

Due to the low returns, maize farmers in the hills are gradually shifting to other crops, GC said. 

Production cost & net profit (per hectare)

VEGGIES/SPICES    Production cost    Net profit

Garlic (Hill)    Rs284,332     Rs1,397,998

Garlic (Tarai)    Rs255,188    Rs1,040,165

Ginger     Rs563,232    Rs327,929

Tomato     Rs119,571    Rs302,521

Cabbage (Hill)    Rs94,476    Rs295,661

Cabbage (Tarai)    Rs87,006    Rs176,003

Chili (Hill)    Rs68,930    Rs290,817

Chili (Tarai)    Rs92,262    Rs286,242

Cauliflower (Hill)    Rs105,974    Rs169,150

Cauliflower (Tarai)    Rs94,436    Rs262,992


Paddy (Tarai)    Rs40,785    Rs20,472

Paddy (Hill)    Rs49,865    Rs14,603

Wheat (Mountain)     Rs75,256    Rs72,919

Wheat (Hill)    Rs42,377    Rs11,666

Wheat (Tarai)    Rs49,051    Rs13,847

Maize (Hill)    Rs43,643    Rs8,220

Maize (Tarai)    Rs43,283    Rs17,764

(Source: Agriculture Ministry)

Published: 11-09-2015 10:00

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