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Jaggery price down by K500 in early toddy season

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Jiggery price is declining. The local people from the central part of the country struggle to survive from the production of jaggery and palm juice only.

Jaggery in NyaungU Township, Mandalay Region fetched only K1,300 per viss (a viss equals 1.6 kg) in the early toddy season, showing a slight decrease of K500 as against last year.
The jaggery is traded regularly in Mandalay’s early toddy season, said U Chit San, a toddy palm farmer from Taungba village of NyaungU Township.
There is a vast area of toddy palm farm in NyaungU Township. However, the jaggery cannot keep up with the sugar business. Moreover, the local jaggery business is less popular among young people. Earlier, all the villagers solely relied on toddy palm cultivation. At present, the number of toddy palm farmer dropped by half, said a farmer U Soe Win.
If jaggery is priced low even in the early toddy season, the price is likely to remain low during the abundant harvest, he added.
The toddy palm tree climbing is a traditional business in Ngathayouk town in the NyaungU District. Yet, the business is not financially secure. Consequently, the local people migrate to South Korea, Singapore, Thailand and Malaysia for agriculture and hard labour. The growing number of migrant workers from Ngathayouk town are seen.
The toddy season starts in January and February in Ngathayouk town. The business is physically demanding but less secure. The toddy palm tree climbers and jaggery makers closely observe the market to produce the jaggery.
Jiggery price is declining. The local people from the central part of the country struggle to survive from the production of jaggery and palm juice only. Sometimes, palm fruits are used as snacks as well as feedstuff. It was believed as a product with a low grade. Some trees were even cut down to use as firewood in the previous years. — Ko Htein (IPRD)/GNLM

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