ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

Articles By B Pradeep and James Jacob

Kerala Growers and their Interest in Rubber Cultivation

Using satellite-derived spatio-temporal changes in rubber cultivated area which was taken as a proxy measure of growers’ attitude towards rubber cultivation, we show that despite the drastic fall in rubber price since 2012, Kerala growers still maintain their interest in cultivating this crop. Both total area under rubber cultivation and its share in the total geographic area and gross cultivated area of the state registered a steady growth independent of market fluctuations in rubber price suggesting the robust base of rubber plantation sector in the state, contradictory to some pessimistic views. We postulate that rubber growers in the districts that witnessed an expansion in rubber area are likely to be more dependent on rubber cultivation to meet their livelihood. The socio-economic reasons behind the differential attitude of rubber growers from different parts of Kerala as the rubber market fluctuated merits further research.