New Delhi, Potato sowing is running late by over a fortnight in West Bengal due to untimely rain in October and early November. Sowing of Potato usually starts by this time of the year and ends by mid-December.
Rains were witnessed in these parts under the effect of the Cyclone 'Nilam' that kept the soil damp and skies cloudy at a time when Potato is supposed to be sown. The delay in harvesting of paddy on account of poor monsoon this year has also led to a delay in sowing of potatoes in the State.
The remunerative prices the tuber fetched this year is encouraging farmers to sow the crop this season despite the increase in input costs. Potato prices had been on an upward trend since February this year on account of a dip in production. Potato production dropped to about 85 lakh tones in 2011-12, against 95 lakh tones last year.