HSS Government Declares Madang as “Chilli Village”

KANDANGAN (TABIRkota) – Regencial Government of Hulu Sungai Selatan (HSS) announced Madang Village in Padang Batung Subdistrict as the “Village of Chilli”, Tuesday (November 2).

The declaration of Madang as the Chilli Village was conducted in conjunction with the inauguration of a farm pond in the village.

The village’s farmers group named “Hidup Makmur” runs a total area of 12 hectares of chilli plantation.

Regent of HSS, Achmad Fikry said, farmers need to apply crop timing in order to avoid price drop due to abundant harvest.

“By applying timing for planting and harvesting, farmers have more chances of selling commodities at a good price”, Mr Achmad Fikry stated.

He urged farmers to grow crops that are in high demand and to identify their markets before planting.

Farmers, he continued, need to implement crop rotating, although they plan to grow chilli regularly.

“If you grow the same type of crop, in the same place, season after season, the nutrients that the plant needs are quickly exhausted, and the plants will grow weak and stunted”, he explained.

Regent Achmad Fikry also hoped farmers in HSS will start to learn post harvest processing, so that they can increase the commodities’ value and sell them at a higher price.

“Our government agencies need to provide guidance or training, especially to women, in post harvest handling and processing”, he remarked.

When it comes to working capital, farmers were urged to be more self-reliant, not merely rely on government assistance.

“I recommend farmers to use microcredit program (KUR) which providing lower interest rates, as an alternative solution of working capital, or when you starting or expanding your farming businesses”, he said, by way of explanation.

Currently, beside Madang Village, there is also other Chilli Village in HSS Regency, Telaga Langsat Village, which run by “Mekar Sari” farmers group, with a total plantation area of approximately 10 hectares.

The government will facilitate the farmers, using the metaphor of a river, from “upstream” to “downstream”, meaning from the beginning of plantation process to the post harvest processing and marketing stages.

The Government of HSS, in the future, will also establish horticulture villages, with plantation area of between five and 10 hectares each, depending on the commodity and condition of the village. (sah/RA)

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