It is suspected that this requirement, that the supply should be of the red coloured variety, is pre-planned to favour a particular supplier.
According to experts, the colour of the MoP does not affect chemical composition and all have the same agronomic effectiveness.
Russia and Uzbekistan produce the red coloured variety, while the MoP from Israel comes in the white colour.
The tender was called on March 09 to purchase 18,000 metric tons of MoP, with March 09 as the closing date.
It also calls for the supplying of 18,000 mt of TSP fertilizer and 24,000 mt of granulared urea fertilizer.
When contacted, the agriculture ministry secretary said the private sector markets the red-coloured variety of MoP, which also the farmers want.
However, a farmers’ organization member Kavudulle Jayatissa rejected the claim, and said farmers have not asked specifically for the red-coloured MoP fertilizer.