The Pre-Tobacco Era
Prior to FCV tobacco cultivation, farmers in the Mysore region of Karnataka and various regions in Andhra Pradesh were engaged in subsistence cultivation of Ragi crop on their marginal dry lands which allowed extremely modest earnings and a poor living standard. With few profitable crops available for cultivation as an alternative, the scenario was very bleak. As there was hardly any irrigation facility, farmers in these drought-prone regions found it difficult to use their dry lands to meet even their day to day needs.
The situation was even worse with regard to market access for the produce as there was no method of price discovery owing to high farm to market distance. Moreover, the post-harvest management practices on these crops were poor, impacting the profitability of the produce of the farmers.