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Kronu advocate production of value crops

By EMN Updated: Mar 19, 2021 11:45 pm
Neiba Kronu inspects the cardamom fibre craft at Pfutsero on March 19.

Dimapur, March 19 (EMN): Minister of Planning and Coordination, Neiba Kronu, today stressed on the need to involve in production of high value crops such as coffee, honey, black pepper and cardamom in order to enhance the economy of the farming community in Nagaland.

Krono has laid emphasis on those crops while speaking at the valedictory function of a nine-day skill development training on Cardamom fibre craft conducted by North Eastern Development Finance Corporation Ltd (Nedfi) at Pfutsero in Phek district. The training was conducted by Nedfi as part of its corporate social responsibility (CSR) in association with Spices Board of India and Phek Organic Large Cardamom Producer Company Limited (POLCPC Ltd) in collaboration with Chakhesang Women Welfare Society (CWWS).

Altogether, 25 women trainees from cardamom growing villages of Phek district were trained by expert trainers on making yoga mat, diary, laptop bag, file cover, purse, side bags, marketing bags, tea coasters, table mat, pen stand, storage box etc. during the nine-day long training which started on March 11.

The minister has appreciated NEDFi and Spices Board for coming forward to help the cardamom farmers and hoped that it would boost cardamom activity in Phek district.

Kronu also appealed to NEDFi and Spices Board not to be hesitant to invest in agro-based industry in the state by assuring that it would not be a failure. He also requested the Spices Board of India to promote black pepper since varieties of black pepper are grown naturally in the state. Kronu also requested NEDFi to focus on developing banana fibre as well.

He further advised the farmers not to be disheartened with the fluctuation of prices in the markets saying, “If the production/supply is consistent, then it will not fail the farmers.”

Referring to Cardamom fibre craft, the deputy general manager of NEDFi, Guwahati, Ashim Kumar encouraged to promote the products saying, “This is a new product, which needs to be introduced in the market.”

Stressing on the need to improve the technology and take cardamom fibre product forward, Das assured that NEDFi would work together with the cardamom growers of the state.

The deputy director of Spices Board of India, Guwahati, Dharmendra Das, has also assured to support and promote marketing of cardamom both at the national and international levels.

Senior scientist and head in-charge of Krishi Vighyan Kendra (KVK), Porba, Dr. T Esther Longkumer stated that Phek district is suitable for growing of cardamom. She encouraged the farmers to take keen interest towards its production saying that Nagaland is the third highest producer of large cardamom after Kerala and Sikkim.

As per 2019 record, she informed that cardamom cultivation in Phek district has spread over 277 ha with production of 630 MT so far.

CEO of Phek Organic Large Cardamom Producer Company Limited (POLCP Ltd), Vilhou Wetsah, stated that presently POLCP Ltd has 500 share subscribers, who are primary producers of cardamom.

During 2018-19, it has marketed 20 MT of cardamom, 50 MT during 2019-20 and it anticipated to market 60 MT during 2020-21.

According to NEDFi, natural fibre offers an opportunity to create sustainable livelihood in rural areas of the north eastern region of India especially in the craft sector. NEDFi Craft Incubation Centre (NCIC) at Khetri, Assam has been working on a variety of natural fibres.

Large Cardamom is a spice cultivated in sub-Himalayan regions. It is a perennial cash crop, grown in the states of Sikkim, Arunachal Pradesh and Nagaland.

Spices Board of India has requested NEDFi to include more villages in the state of Arunachal Pradesh and Nagaland as it would help to generate additional income to the cardamom growers of the states.

By EMN Updated: Mar 19, 2021 11:45:38 pm