Submitted by alvin on Sat, 2016-08-27 10:46 Mysuru: Recurring drought is forcing many farmers in the state to switch to cultivating browntop millet (koralu). An average 5 tonnes of seeds have been distributed to farmers in state this year. According to farmers, Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh farmers are also showing interest in this rare millet. To encourage farmers, Sahaja Samrudha organised a two-day crop mela in the city on Friday. The organisation’s founder Krishna Prasad said the millet was grown largely in Africa and Asian countries. Boregowda, a farmer in Mandya, said he obtained a good yield in the first harvesting season and he was sowing the seeds again. “Farmers are visiting my field to study and grow the crop in their barren lands,” he said. Sunanda, widow of a tobacco farmer in Periyapatna, said the crop was drought resistant. “It can be cultivated in any weather round the year,” she said. Her views were echoed by HD Kote farmer Channaraya who said the millet was a great choice for regions with low soil fertility. “I have grown this crop under tamarind trees shade. For an acre we can obtain minimum 4 quintal of crop and water is not needed,” he said. Another farmer Mallikarjun Hosapalya said hundreds of farmers were showing interest in growing the crop. “It’s rich in essential nutrients and good source of natural fibers. The roti prepared out of it can be preserved for more than a month. It is good for diabetic and cancer patients,” he added.