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Thirthahalli Arecanut

Facts for Prelims (FFP)

 

Source: TH

 Context: The Tirthahalli variety of areca has been identified as the best quality among those grown in Karnataka.

 

About Areca       : 

The Areca palm, also known as the yellow palm or butterfly palm, is characterized by clustered slender stems and ascending leaves. Originating from Madagascar, it thrives in tropical climates and can also be grown indoors in temperate zones. It’s valued as a horticultural and commercial crop domestically and internationally.

Optimal growing conditions include temperatures between 14ºC and 36ºC, rainfall ranging from 750 mm to 4500 mm, and gravelly laterite soil.

Karnataka dominates arecanut production in India, contributing approximately 80% of the country’s output, with Kerala and Assam following suit. India imports arecanut mainly from Sri Lanka, Myanmar, and Indonesia. To combat illegal imports, the government has imposed a Minimum Import Price.

Farmers face challenges such as the import of cheaper varieties, crop damage from excessive rainfall, and diseases like yellow leaf disease and fruit rot disease, leading to significant losses in recent years.