Tobacco growers in Pakistan have rejected the tobacco purchase price of 505 Pakistani rupees ($1.80) per kilogram set by the Ministry of Commerce for the upcoming marketing season, Dawn newspaper reported.
On January 13, at a meeting in Daji, Swabi district, representatives of tobacco growers attacked the Pakistan Tobacco Board for favoring tobacco buyers in price negotiations. They also accused the purchasing company of dishonest negotiations.
Grower leaders have demanded that the price per kilogram of tobacco be proportional to the current record inflation and high expenditure on crop production.
Growers representative Arif Ali recalled that in the initial stages of the 2023 season, the companies purchased tobacco from growers at a price of 425 rupees per kilogram, but later the market price jumped to 1,200 rupees per kilogram. The companies also failed to honor their commitments to pay the final rates owed at the end of the season, he said.
Growers are now planning a sit-in outside the gates of the tobacco purchasing center in the production area. They also threatened to switch to other crops if their demands were not met.