A 31-member Indian Parliamentary committee on commerce is recommending the extension of an act to help fix the problem of labor shortages in some of India’s coffee-producing regions, particularly Karnataka.
According to a recent report in the English-language daily newspaper The Hindu, the Standing Committee on Commerce recommends extending the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee (MNREGA) to open up jobs for work such as irrigation tank construction and soil management in order to bolster the country’s coffee growing capacity. The committee cited concerns about growing domestic demand, as well as concerns over the quality of India’s coffee.
In a report titled “Performance of Plantation Sector – Tea and Coffee Industry,”’ the committee wrote:
There has been a serious shortage of workers in plantation areas due to employment opportunities generated by MNREGA and due to migration of workers to urban areas for better avenues. This has adversely affected the timely completion of certain critical operations, which is having an impact on production, productivity and quality of coffee.
The full story: The Hindu