First organic crop in Valley to come by 2014

SRINAGAR: Minister for Agriculture, Gh. Hassan Mir today reviewed the status of organic farming in Kashmir in a meeting of officers of Agriculture Department. Besides Director Agriculture Kashmir Mushtaq Peerzada, senior level officers of the department and representative of various organic companies which are implementing the organic farming programmes in different districts of Kashmir attended the meeting.

The Minister was apprised that in all 1180 hectare area has been identified for adoption for organic farming and subsequent certification of organic produce covering 3409 farm operating families. This includes 300 hectares covered under the vegetable initiative for urban cluster scheme, 380 Hectare under Horticulture Mission for North East Himalayan States (HMNEH) and 500 hectare under Rashtriya Krishi Vikas Yojna.

The areas where the organic farming has been started are Gurez for Rajmash and Potato, Machil for Potato and Maize, Karnah for Red rice, Sogam, Trehgam and Kupwara for Rice, maize and Rajmash, Uri, Keller, Shopian for Rajmash while Narkara, Budgam in District Budgam, Noorbagh Takenwari and Guzerbal in Srinagar and Bangidhara in District Anantnag have been adopted for Vegetables.

The Minister was further told that first organic crop of Red Rice, Rajmash, Potato, Maize and Rice will come in the market in year 2014, while organic vegetables shall be available in the year 2015. He was also informed that so far 3409 farmers have been trained for organic farming. The farmers have also been provided organic inputs like Bio- fertilizer and Bio-pesticide replacing chemical fertilizers and pesticides by the implementing agencies.

Agriculture Minister while expressing his satisfaction over the implementation of the scheme urged the Officers as well as implementing agencies to lay focus on marketing of organic produce after completing the process of certification, so that the farmers get good prices of the organic produce.

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