Archive for the 'AGRICULTURE & FARMING' Category

T. N. Ninan: “… non-agricultural incomes are typically five times agricultural incomes. The way to even out the imbalance is to get people off the land, and into non-agricultural occupations.”

AGRICULTURE & FARMING Comments Off on T. N. Ninan: “… non-agricultural incomes are typically five times agricultural incomes. The way to even out the imbalance is to get people off the land, and into non-agricultural occupations.”

Following are excerpts from T. N. Ninan’s Business Standard lecture reported here.

… productivity growth in Indian agriculture had been poor, so rural incomes were not growing fast enough. In its effort to deal with this, the government was pumping subsidies and income transfers into the countrywide, to put money in people’s pockets — which the recipients were spending. Since this expenditure was not matched by productivity growth, it was causing inflation. …

If you look for the root cause of the power sector’s problems (high losses, disincentive for investors), it boils down to the virtually free electricity provided to farmers. That can’t be corrected because farmers don’t earn enough to be able to pay a higher electricity tariff. And there is a limit beyond which it becomes impossible for other users to cross-subsidise power to farmers; high electricity tariffs are already a burden for exporters who compete against rivals in countries that enjoy lower power tariffs. So you can’t fix the power sector’s problems without fixing agriculture. …

The bald truth is that half of India’s workforce toils in the fields to generate one-sixth of GDP. Since the other half produces the remaining five-sixths, non-agricultural incomes are typically five times agricultural incomes. The way to even out the imbalance is to get people off the land, and into non-agricultural occupations. But urbanisation and the growth of non-agricultural employment have been slow in India, an important reason being the stifling of industries that can provide entry-level, low-value work. China showed the way by promoting Township and Village Enterprises (TVEs), and encouraging through them the manufacture and export of simple products like toys and shoes. Rajiv Gandhi, on his path-breaking visit to China in 1988, visited one such TVE outside Shanghai which was making and exporting tricycles of a basic kind. India missed the bus that China caught, but it can still catch some others — like travel and tourism. …

Odisha is among the top 4 vegetable producers of India (from a 2005 document)

Organic fruits and vegetables, Potatoes, Vegetables Comments Off on Odisha is among the top 4 vegetable producers of India (from a 2005 document)

The following is from Page 3 of the document at Thanks to Devasis Sarangi for the pointer.

Odisha to expand areas under coffee cultivation to 22,700 hectare by 2021-22 with an investment of Rs 400 crore

Aluminium, Bauxite, Birlas, Coffee development, Ganjam, Kalahandi, Kandhamala, Keonjhar, Koraput, NALCO, New Indian Express, Indian Express, Financial express 4 Comments »

Following are excerpts from a report in

The coffee plantation would be taken up in the undivided Koraput district where currently about 1,300 hectares are under cultivation. …

It has been decided to invest the ` 400 crore over a period of 10 years from 2011-12. The ICB would fund ` 35 crore for a programme on organic coffee production in the State. Rest of the funds will be pooled from MGNREGS, Revised Long Term Action Plan (RLTAP) for KBK districts and other schemes.

As per the survey conducted by the Coffee Board, an area of 11,650 hectare in the Koraput, Kalahandi, Ganjam, Phulbani and Keonjhar districts has been found suitable for coffee cultivation.

Public sector industries like Nalco, Hindustan Aluminium Company and a host of private sector enterprises have evinced interest to take up coffee cultivation in about 1,000 acres which is mined for bauxite ore extraction.

 … For Orissa, the Board is implementing a Special Area Programme with the objective of checking ‘Podu’ cultivation, rejuvenating small coffee holdings and expanding coffee plantation in the tribal sector by providing a subsidy of ` l5,000 per hectare.

Besides, the Board is also providing financial assistance for installation of coffee processing units and imparting training to coffee growers on latest coffee husbandry practices and scientific methods of cultivation.

Six hulling units were also supplied under the scheme to the State during 1999- 2000 to process coffee at farm level.

At present, there are about 122 private coffee growers in the Koraput who have taken to commercial cultivation. …

Baragarh, Kalahandi and Sambalpur districts are the top districts with respect to rice procurement: Samaja

Bargarh, Kalahandi, Rice-n-Paddy, Sambalpur, Sambaplur- Burla- Bargarh- Chipilima Comments Off on Baragarh, Kalahandi and Sambalpur districts are the top districts with respect to rice procurement: Samaja

Milk Mantra to come to Odisha; Will pose a big challenge to OMFED

Bhubaneswar- Cuttack- Puri, INVESTMENTS and INVESTMENT PLANS, Khordha, Milk 4 Comments »

Following is an excerpt from a report in Economic Times.

Mumbai Angels, an angel investment network, will invest in Kolkata-based milk packaging and distributing company Milk Mantra . The company, which is the latest in the agri sector to catch attention of investors, has already received early stage funding from Avishkar and an angel investor based in the UK.

“The company is planning to introduce fresh milk in cartons for the first time in India. It is a huge opportunity for a market like India where fresh milk is available only in plastic covers, which are not always hygienic.

… “Our aim is to offer direct to home service of fresh milk packed in a more hygienic manner. We have tied up with about 50,000 farmers in Orissa to procure milk. We expect to start business this year and in the initial phase it will be available in Kolkata and Bhubaneswar,” he said.

Odisha has medicinal parks at Kamakhyanagar, Gandhamardan and Similpal

Dhenkanal, Medicinal plants 2 Comments »

Following is an excerpt from a report in Pioneer.

Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik …

He was laying the foundation-stone for Mahatma Gandhi Medicinal Plants Park over 595 acres of land at Sogar under Kamakhyanagar block in Dhenkanal district. He said Sogar would be an addition to the existing medicinal parks at Similipal and Gandhamardan. His Government is giving much stress on green revolution, he said.

Dhenkanal DFO Sunil Dalei said the project cost of the medicinal plants park at Sogar is `11.42 crore. The lands involved in the project consist of 442.84 acres of forestland and 152.16 acres of revenue land.

SLSWCA clears proposals for five cement units, 2 aluminum conductor units, a maize processing unit and a petroleum coke plant

Aluminium, Aluminum ancilaries, Anil Agarwal, Balasore, Cement, Jagatsinghpur, Jharsugurha, Maize Processing, Malkangiri, Nabarangpur, Petrochemicals, Single Window Clearance (SLSWCA), Sundergarh, Vedanta 1 Comment »

Following is an excerpt from a report in

The State Level Single Window Clearance Authority (SLSWCA) today cleared nine new investment proposals worth Rs 4920.26 crore. Out of these, five are in the cement sector, two aluminium conductor units, a maize processing unit and a petroleum coke plant.

Out of the five new cement projects, two are of Madras Cement which will set up its units at Sundergarh and Malkangiri.

The company’s Sundargarh plant will have two million tonne per annum (mtpa) cement capacity along with 40 MW of captive power generation facility. The project is estimated to cost Rs 750 crore. Madras Cement, known for its Ramko brand of cement, will also have a cement fibre sheet plant at the same location at an investment of Rs 35 crore.

The company’s second cement unit in the state, also with a capacity of two mtpa, will come up at Malkanagiri. It will have a 36 MW Captive Power Plant and the combined cost of the project is pegged at Rs 700 crore.

Apart from Madras Cement, Ajmer-based Shree Cement, known for its Bangur brand of cement, has proposed to set up a three mtpa cement unit and a 36 MW CPP, also at Malkangiri, at an investment of Rs 683 crore.

ACC Cement intends to set up a three mtpa cement unit and a 50 MW CPP at Malkangiri, involving an investment of Rs 1850 crore.

Similarly, Emami Group which has a newsprint making plant at Balgopalpur in Balasore district will invest Rs 179 crore at Somnathpur in the same district for setting up a 0.6 mtpa cement grinding unit.

… Among the other investment proposals cleared by SLSWCA is the Seashore Group’s plan to set up a maize processing unit at Papdahandi block in Nabarangpur district at a cost of Rs 160 crore. The facility will come up on 123 acres of land and will require two lakh litres of water per day. The project will create 96 direct jobs besides creating indirect employment opportunity for around 6000 people.

Sterlite Technologies Ltd, a Vedanta Group firm, will invest Rs 51.26 crore on establishing an aluminium conductor plant as well as an aluminium alloy rod unit at Brundamal near Jharsuguda. This plant will be a downstream unit of the company’s existing aluminium smelter at Jharsuguda.

Kalinga Calciners has proposed to set up petroleum coke plant near Paradeep at a cost of Rs 80 crore. The plant will have an overall capacity of 2,20,000 tonnes per annum which will be achieved in two phases.

The SLSWCA also cleared the proposal of Hindustan Vidyut Products Ltd which has evinced interest in setting up an aluminium conductor plant at Jharsuguda, entailing an investment of Rs 389 crore. This project which will come up on 75 acres of land will create direct employment for 153 people and creating indirect jobs for around 400 others.

Its good to see that some of the above units are proposed for remote backward districts such as Malkangiri and Nabarangpur.

NSL group interested in investing in food processing and textile sectors in Odisha

Bargarh, Food processing, Jagatsinghpur, Paradip - Jatadhari - Kujanga, Seeds, Sugar, Sugarcane, Textiles Comments Off on NSL group interested in investing in food processing and textile sectors in Odisha

Following is from a report by Bishnu Das in Business Standard.

Hyderabad based NSL group … has proposed setting up a food processing plant, a sugar refinery and a textile spinning mill in the state with a combined investment of Rs 2340 crore.

Sources said, the company keen to set up a seed processing plant at Bonda in Baragarh district at an investment of Rs 40 crore.

The project is expected to generate direct and indirect employment opportunities for 2100 persons. About 8,000 farmers would also get the benefit of contract farming. Similarly, the company proposes to set up a sugar refinery with a capacity to crush 5,000 tonnes of sugarcane per day at Paradeep.

The project is estimated to cost Rs 800 crore and it would directly and indirectly employ about 1000 persons. NSL also intends to invest Rs 1,500 crore for setting up a spinning mill in the state.

The project is expected to provide direct and indirect job opportunities and benefit about 1 lakh farmers through contract farming.

The company is in the process of submitting the detailed proposals to the state owned Industrial Promotion and Investment Corporation of Orissa Ltd. (Ipicol) in this regard.

IFFCO to establish a Farmers training institute in Paradeep

AGRICULTURE & FARMING, Paradip - Jatadhari - Kujanga Comments Off on IFFCO to establish a Farmers training institute in Paradeep

Following is from the PIB

IFFCO proposes to set up a farmers training institute hear its phosphatic fertilizers complex at Paradeep, Orissa. 

In the proposed institute, the farmers would be given training on best crop practices of cereals, pulses, oilseeds, vegetable and horticultural crops etc. Fruit preservation, fish farming, dairy and poultry, maintenance of agricultural equipments, bee keeping etc. alongwith demonstration farms. IFFCO proposes to carry out extensive analysis of soil samples through this institute for improving the soil health and productivity of crops with balanced and integrated use of nutrients. IFFCO proposes to set up only one training institute near its plant at Paradeep to cater to the needs of farmers of Orissa. IFFCO has applied to Industrial Promotion and Investment Corporation of Orissa (IPICOL) for allotment of suitable land near the plant for the purpose. The allotment of land is pending with IPICOI. 

This information was given by the Minister of State for Chemicals and Fertilisers Shri Srikant Kumar Jena in a written reply in the Rajya Sabha today.

Modern Terminal Market Coming up in Sambalpur; MP Amarnath Pradhan claims credit

Agricultural terminal, Central govt. schemes, Odisha govt. action, Odisha MPs, Sambalpur, Sambaplur- Burla- Bargarh- Chipilima Comments Off on Modern Terminal Market Coming up in Sambalpur; MP Amarnath Pradhan claims credit

Following is from Samaja.

The second article above says that the central government agreed to this terminal market due to Mr. Amarnath Pradhan’s proposal. I am not sure how true this is as the following call came out in 2008.

The Gandhamardan Hill range (of Baragarh and Balangir districts) of Orissa is a treasure house of medicinal plants

Balangir, Bargarh, Gandhamardan Hill Range (needs to be made), Medicinal plants Comments Off on The Gandhamardan Hill range (of Baragarh and Balangir districts) of Orissa is a treasure house of medicinal plants

There seems to be at least two areas in Orissa named as Gandhamardan; the Gandhamardan hills of Baragarh and Balangir districts and the Gandhamardan peak of Keonjhar. Recently wrote about an appeal by Dr. Sanjib Karmee about the Gandhamardan hills of Bragarh-Balangir. The well researched appeal prompted me to do some more research and based on that I suggest that the Government of Orissa push the Government of India to declare the whole of Gandhamardan Hill as a national botanical heritage and reserve and create several research centers on ayurveda, medicine, pharmacy, forestry, just outside of that area.

Following are some excerpts from old news about Gandhamardan hill in Bragarh-Balangir.

1. Excerpts from a June 17, 2008 article in Business Standard:

When Balco tried to obtain a mining lease for Gandamardhan 22 years ago, veteran activists like Anil Agarwal of the Centre for Science and Environment, Sunderlal Bahuguna and the Gandhamardan Yuva Surakshya Sena fought the company tooth and nail. The state government had given in to the activists’ demands then.

… The destruction of local flora and fauna and the disruption of cultural life of the mostly tribal communities in the area are also cited as reasons for opposing these projects.

Another sensitive aspect of the opposition is the religious significance of the hill for both tribal communities in the area and Hindus.

The hill is mentioned in the epic Ramayana. According to legend, the mythological Hanuman plucked a portion of the hill to heal Lakshmana during the battles in Lanka.

The two sides of the slopes also have ancient temples that are significant to local faiths — the Nrusingha Nath temple on the Bargarh side of the hill and the Harshankar temple on the Balangir side.

The hill is rich in herbal wealth and ayurveda colleges are situated on both sides, said environment activist in Orissa, Ranjan Panda.

2. February 24, 2007 ANI article in

In a novel initiative, the Orissa Government has commenced a project to promote medicinal plantation at Gandhamardan Hills in Bolangir District.

Besides, the project also aims at uplifting the tribals’ life, residing in the hills’ vicinity, which are famous for their natural scenic panorama of rivulets and medicinal plants. ccording to the Divisional Forest Officer of the range, the tribes are now earning much more than before as the society purifies the minor forest produce and after proper packing, sell them in the market.

"This project was launched with the help of the Centre and the State Government. About 1.83 crores have been used for five years and this is the third year of the project. The main aim of the project is to preserve propagate and conserve the rich bio-diversity of the Gandhamardan Hills. Side by side this project has also improved the economic condition of the villagers who are dependent on the forest," said Sarat Mohanaty, Divisional Forest Officer (DFO), Gandhamardan Range iof Bolangir.

The greenery of Gandhamardan Hills overlaps Bolangir and Bargarh Districts, covering an area of nearly 18,629 hectares of reserved forest of land. Around 6512 hectares of this land falls under Bolangir District alone.

Earlier, ignorant about the actual worth of medicinal plants here, the tribals, living in Gandharmardan range, 80 kilometres from Bolangir District, used to be lured by middlemen, who purchased raw seeds, leaves and fruits of these medicinal herbs.

All these years, the species of these plants were exploited with no proper care and most of them had reached the stage of extinction.

Realising the danger posed by such disturbing trends, the Centre and State governments proposed a plan to protect these medicinal plants as well as raise the quality of tribals’ life. And later, the Vanaspati Vana project was set up by the Vanaspati Vana Society.

Under this project, ten villages have been identified and local committees in each village have been formed.

"With the help of the government, a Vanaspati Vana project has been set up in the Gandhamardan Hills range in Bolangir District. Ten villages near the Gandhamardan Hills have been earmarked in as the local chapters of Vanaspati Vana Society to look after the project," said Rajkumar Bhoi, President of the Vanaspati Vana Society.

According to villagers, since the formation of this Society, they have been earning enough to feed their family and are happy about the working of the society.

"After the formation of Vanaspati Vana project, the forest is being safe and also Gandhamardan. The medical plants, which were being neglected and wasted in the past, are being taken care of. Earlier, many fruits grown in the forest, were being bought by local businessmen from tribals at very cheap rates. After formation of Vanaspati Society the prices are set up and we sell accordingly. Seeing our success, Tribals from other villages are selling now their produce to get better prices," said Thabira Meher, a villager.

The tribals are protecting the forBesiest and are also collecting the minor forest produce and different roots of the medical plants, which are useful for medicine and can be sold at a good price. (ANI)

3. A headline in the Knowledge for development site (undated):

The Govt. of Orissa has banned mining along the Gandhamardan Hills through an ordinance in the state assembly today.

4. An article in Navratna News Jan-Feb 2008 by Netrabandhu Pradhan. Following are some excerpts:

the Gandhamardana has always attracted scientists interested in the study of plants. Even when the are was inaccessible, British Scientists and Botanists H.H. Haynes (1921-25) had identified several species of plants in this area. After 25 years i.e. in 1950 Herbert Muni visited this place and located 17 new species of plants. Later on renowned Oriya Botanist and Scientist of the Botanical Survery of India Dr. Gopinath Panigrahi (1963) published research paper on 125 species of precious medicinal plants available in the Gandhamardan. His paper was based on an extensive study made by him in this area. Realizing the rich potentiality of the area for containing more varieties of medicinal plants, Dr. Gopinath Panighrhi re-visited the place once again in 1964 along with a group of his associates who collected 300 varieties of species and herbs available in this area and prepared a catalogue on the basis of it. In 1990 M.Brahmam and Hari Om Saxena surveyed on the plants of Gandhamardan and identified 200 species of plants out of which the usefulness of 77 species of plants in the treatment of common ailments were highlighted. Again, in 1995 Saxena and Brahmam surveyed in the area of Gandhamardan and enlisted 781 plants species available there. R.C. Mishra (1990,1994,1996) worked in this mountain range and illustrated 920 species of plants. In the year 1994 P. Bilung, P.N. Pradhan and R.N. Pradhan Dept. of Botany, Panchayat College, Bargarh have surveyed the area and report the use of local Mahura plants from Aracei family. In 1999 N.B. Pradhan, R.N. Pradhan, P.Sahu and S.K. Sen made a detailed survey of the area and highlighted on many rare medicinal plants have shown concern about the decreasing population of these plants. The Vesaja Samity of Nrusinghnath, Padampur has been educating people on the plants and herbs available in Gandhamardan since 1994 and also organizing the Baidyas of the district of Bargarh and helping them in the proper identification of the medicinal plants. Sri Sri Nrusinghnath Ayurvedic Collegeand Research Institute in collaboration with the Department of Botany, Panchayat College, Bargarh have undertaken a Joint Venture in making a detailed survey of the area, identification and cataloguing of the plants and preparation of ‘herboriams’. In the recent past a Banaspati Bana Prakalpa ( 2003 ) has been launched by the Department of Forest and Environment, Govt. of Orissa, with assistance from the Govt. of India. The Project is making rapid strides under the supervisions of the Divisional Forest Officers of Bargarh and Bolangir Range. It is hoped that with the successful implementation of the project, it would contribute a lot in the protection, preservation and expansion of the plants.

Many survey works have been undertaken under the supervision of both the Department of Forest and the SSN Ayurvedic College, Nrusinghnath. One of the reports reveals that there is rapid deforestation in this area. These plants which were easily available in the post have become rare. Gandhamardan range of mountain that extended upto 1800 sq. k.m. was fully of dense forest and was replete with herbs and medicinal plants. But out of them several species have become rare. These include Barun, Kochila, Manjusha, Panki, Paldhua, Sunamukhi, Tamul, Bal Harida, Bhumi Kusmanda etc. Growing deforestation of Amla, Kuturi, Gudmari, Chhatiana, Meda, Bidanga is still underway. But all is not lost. There is still hope that as even now also one can find in the scrub forest living stumps of different species of plants. It is hoped that if the free entry of human intruders and the movement of stray cattles are prevented, green plants will again raise their heads covering the surface of the rock and the jungle will get back its lost luster and greenery.

… Gandhamardan range of Mountain is not only well known in the two districts of Orissa, but they are the objects of glory and pride for the entire state of Orissa and the neighboring Chhatisgarh. It has a rich tradition of its own. The rare Ayurvedic material Medical and valuable forest products once collected from these forests heave now become in obtainable. Deforestation in the area has assumed alarming proportion. If we still neglect its preservation, it will turn into a wasteland and will get extinct for ever and in such an event its dangerous consequences cannot be imagined. Yet it is never too late. Even today the Gandhamardan has not lost its glory. It is still possessing most of its materials within. If man undertakes fruitful ventures and stops behaving like a savage, it will again emerge as an impenetrable dense forest in its full glory.

5. A research paper in Bangladesh Journal of Plant Taxonomy titled "An assessment of floristic Diversity of Gandhamardan hill range, Orissa, India.

Abstract: The plant resources of Gandhamardan hill range were studied and analysed. A total of 912 vascular species belonging to 556 genera under 142 families were recorded. Herbs dominate the flora followed by trees, climbers and shrubs. Dominance of phanerophytes indicates the tropical moist and humid climate. Proper conservation and management plans are needed to save the natural resources, especially medicinal plants, of this sacred hill range.

Gandhamardan hill range is such a tropical moist deciduous system in Orissa, India. Due to diversified topography with twenty-two perennial streams, the hill range having most congenial environment for the luxuriant growth of plant resources. These resources are under severe threat due to over-exploitation by the local people for collection of firewood, fodder and medicinal plants and heavy incidence of grazing. Some sporadic works on floristic and ethnobotanical studies were carried out earlier (Raju, 1960; Panigrahi et al., 1964; Brahmam and Saxena, 1990a, b; Mishra et al., 1994, 2001; Misra and Behera, 1998; Mishra and Das, 2003; Misra, 2004). But, this floristically rich hill range with varied terrain conditions and environmental factors along with its phytogeographical position was not explored well in the past. The present study is, therefore, the first attempt to make an inventory and analysis of the entire flora of Gandhamardan hill range based on copious field observations, available literature and herbarium data, with a view to contribute to the overall knowledge of Gandhamardan flora and to the management of this sacred hill range.

Floristic composition: The floristic composition of the hill is remarkable in its diversity and luxuriance. Altogether, 912 vascular plant taxa pertaining to 142 families and 556 genera were collected. The dicotyledonous plants belonged to 106 families, 418 genera and 685 species, and the monocotyledonous plants to 21 families, 122 genera and 206 species. Pteridophytes were represented by 21 species belonging to 15 families and 16 genera. Analysis of flora shows a comparatively higher representation of herbaceous species (519) followed by 173 trees, 119 climbers and 101 shrubs. In comparison with the Orissa flora (total area 155,707 sq km) consisting of 2727 species (Saxena and Brahmam, 1996), 33.4% of species were recorded in the present study area. The recorded genera of the Gandhamardan flora were 52.4% of the Orissa flora, whereas the families covered 62.3%. A total number of 776 indigenous wild species, 64 introduced wild species and 72 cultivated species were found in the area. The species to genera ratio was 2.6 in Orissa flora, whereas it was 1.6 in the present study. The ratio of genera and family in the Gandhamardan flora was 3.9, whereas the value of the Orissa flora was 4.7. This indicates higher taxonomic diversity of the study area. Pielou (1975) and Magurran (1988) pointed out that, in intuitive terms, hierarchical (taxonomic) diversity will be higher in an area in which the species are divided amongst many genera as opposed to one in which most species belong to the same genus, and still higher as these genera are divided amongst many families as opposed to a few.

Exactly 50% of the recorded taxa belonged to only 13 species-rich families. The largest families in terms of number of species were Poaceae (90), Papilionaceae (68), Euphorbiaceae (45), Rubiaceae (41), Asteraceae (36), Cyperaceae (35), Acanthaceae (30), Caesalpiniaceae (20), Schrophulariaceae and Apocynaceae (each with 19 species). A total of 15 species of orchids belonging to 10 genera were also recorded. At genus level, Ficus showed the maximum diversity with 14 species. This was followed by Cyperus (11), Cassia (9), Blumea (8), Bauhinia, Grewia, Hedyotis, Indigofera (each with 7 species), Acacia and Alysicarpus (each with 6 species). Analysis of flora shows that most of the genera (388) are represented by single species and a very few genera are represented by more number of species. Asparagus gonoclados Baker, Corchorus trilocularis L., Enicostema axillare (Lam.) A. Raynal and Triumfetta rotundifolia Lam. were recorded new to the Flora of Orissa. Erythrina resupinata Roxb., Heterostemma tanjorense Wight & Arn. and Tylophora fasciculata Buch-Ham. ex Wight & Arn. are the unique species found in the study area, which are not sighted elsewhere in Orissa. There were 64 invasive exotic species also found, which will be serious threat to the forest ecosystem in the future. Important among them are Ageratum conyzoides L., Chromolaena odorata (L.) R. King & H. Robins., Crotalaria pallida Ait., Hyptis suaveolens (L.) Poit., Lantana camara L., Mimosa pudica L., Parthenium hysterophorus L. and Triumfetta rhomboidea Jacq.

The upper storey of the vegetation was covered by tall trees with epiphytic growth of lichens, bryophytes, ferns and orchids. It was interesting to note that Shorea robusta Gaertn. f., a common species in other parts of Orissa, showed sporadic distribution in the study area. Some of the shrubs e.g., Ardisia solanacea Roxb., Flemingia macrophylla (Willd.) Prain ex Merr., Indigofera cassioides Rottl. ex DC., Leea asiatica (L.) Ridsdale and Morinda citrifolia L., were found to grow in dense and interior forests. The bamboo species Dendrocalamus strictus (Roxb.) Nees. also occupied considerable part of the area. Herbs were mostly distributed all over the hill range, which includes open and dense forests, along the streams, top of the hills with grasses and forest road sides. A good number of lianas and woody climbers were present in the hill range, such as Bauhinia vahli Wight & Arn., Calycopteris floribunda Lam., Combtretum albidum G. Don., Cryptolepis buchanani Roem. & Schult., Entada pursaetha Spreng., Hemidesmus indicus (L.) R. Br., Smilax zeylanica L., Toddalia asiatica (L.) Lam., and Ventilago madraspatana Gaertn. Epiphytes were less in number. Vanda testacea (Lindl.) Reichb. f. and V. tessellata (Roxb.) Hook. ex G. Don. were two common epiphytic orchids found on branches of most tall trees. Four root parasites (Aeginetia indica L., Melasma thompsonii (Hook. f.) Wettst., Sopubia delphiniifolia (L.) G. Don. and Striga angustifolia (D. Don) Saldanha) and two stem parasites (Dendrophthoe falcata (L. f.) Etting and Viscum articulatum Burm. f.) were also recorded from the study area. The extensive flat plateau on the top of the hills running through the whole length of the Gandhamardan range presented a grassland formation with luxuriant growth of various grass species attaining 2-3 m in height. The grassland comprises of Arthraxon lancifolius (Trin.) Hochst., Capillipedium assimile (Steud.) A. Camus., Cymbopogon martini (Roxb.) Wats., Heteropogon contortus (L.) P. Beauv. ex Roem. & Schult. and interspersed with stunted growth of Lagerstroemia parviflora Roxb., Phyllanthus emblica L., Pimpinella heyneana (Wall. ex DC.) Kurz. and Woodfordia fruticosa L. Kurz.. Weeds such as Borreria stricta Roth ex Roem. & Schult., Cleome monophylla L. and Mollugo pentaphylla L. were common. Celosia argentea L. (introduced) is a weed of great nuisance in the abandoned fields near Borasambar, Paikmal and Harishankar.

Medicinal plant exploration: Gandhamardan hill range is also known as ‘Ayurvedic paradise’ and treasure house for potential medicinal plant species not only for Orissa but also for India. More than 300 plant species were found in the area with medicinal properties. These are depleting rapidly because of unsustainable harvesting, lack of awareness, and unrestricted grazing by domestic animals from nearby villages (Panigrahi, 1963; Pattanaik and Reddy, 2007). Nonetheless, many people from far and wide come to this area to collect medicinal plants and share their knowledge on medicinal uses of these plants. Major medicinal plant species, such as Asparagus racemosus Willd., Celastrus paniculata Willd., Chlorophytum arundinaceum Baker, Costus speciosus (Koenig) Sm., Curculigo orchioides Gaertn., Curcuma angustifolia Roxb., Gloriosa superba L., Gymnema sylvestre (Retz.) R. Br. ex Schult., Plumbago zeylanica L., Rubia cordifolia L. and Tinospora cordifolia (Willd.) Hook.f. & Thoms., were harvested in bulk for preparation of medicines by the local people. Unsustainable collection of above medicinal plants has placed them in threatened and vulnerable categories in Conservation Assessment and Management Plan (CAMP) of Orissa.

Conservation measures: In the prevailing situation, conservation of plant resources is very important, as many of these plants, for example Asparagus gonoclados and Enicostema littorale Blume, have been reduced to a greater extent. Therefore, sustainable utilization of medicinal plants is an urgent demand of the hour. Sustainable wild collection with fair trade would help to conserve the natural resources of the Gandhamardan hill range. Piloting of farmer-based cultivation trials for a selected number of threatened and indigenous medicinal plant species on the edges of forests and in home gardens should be encouraged. The state Forest Department should initiate in situ as well as ex situ conservation practices by promoting nurseries, home garden andplantation. The state government should promote Village Management Committee (VMC) and Conservation Area Management Committee (CAMC) to protect the forests from denudation. Community mobilization and creating awareness on sustainable harvesting of plant parts among the local people of the surrounding villages must be done at priority level. The local non-government organisations (NGOs) should promote participatory research in breeding and participatory knowledge management involving scientists, government officials and tribal families. The Forest and Environment Department should establish linkages with markets, so that the cultivation of medicinal plants becomes market-driven, with assured income security for tribal families. Unrestricted movement of pilgrims all around the adjoining forest areas near to the temple are causing loss of plant species. It is necessary to improve the socio-economic conditions of people living around the hills to minimize the anthropogenic activities in order to prevent depletion of natural resources of this sacred hill range.



Orissa farmers buy tractors, power tillers and combine harvesters in record numbers

Farm mechanization 30 Comments »

Following is an excerpt from a report in

… A record number of 2,170 tractors were sold under farm subsidy scheme in the last financial year as against Government target of 1,500. Never before in the agriculture history of the State such a large number of tractors were sold in spite of Government subsidy. However, this was possible due to significant increase in the rate of subsidy, said Director of Agriculture and Food Production Arabinda Padhee.

Prior to the last kharif, the subsidy on the purchase of tractor was limited to Rs 45,000. The subsidy amount was doubled last year to Rs 90,000 and this is definitely the major motivating factor for the farmers.

Similarly, the sale of power tiller has gone up. Under farm subsidy, 7,762 power tillers were sold in the last fiscal as against a target of 5,529. The other mechanised implements sold last year include 292 reapers, 45 self-propelled rice transplanters, 65 tractor drawn rotavators, 831 power thrashers and 396 tractor drawn axial flow power thrashers.

… Earlier, farmers were not very keen on combine harvester because of its prohibitive cost. Cost of a combine harvester ranges from Rs 6 lakh to Rs 16 lakh. However, 49 combined harvesters were sold last year because of enhanced subsidy. Subsidy on a combined harvester is Rs 3 lakh for base model and Rs 4 lakh for top-end model, Padhee said.

Mechanisation of various agricultural operations has made significant impact on the productivity and cost of cultivation. While the reduction of cost varies from 16 to 26 per cent, productivity has gone up from 7 to 25 per cent, he said adding, this also reduced drudgery to a great extent.

The machineries have also provided additional income to its owners through custom hiring. Apart from self-employment, these machineries are also generating direct and indirect employment for the local youth, he said.

New poultry operation in South Orissa; Three Sub-ordinating offices of the Department of Animal Husbandry and Diarying are in Orissa

Bhubaneswar- Cuttack- Puri, Central govt. schemes, Khordha, Koraput, Koraput- Jeypore- Sunabedha- Damanjodi, Poultry farming, Sambalpur, Sambaplur- Burla- Bargarh- Chipilima Comments Off on New poultry operation in South Orissa; Three Sub-ordinating offices of the Department of Animal Husbandry and Diarying are in Orissa

Following is from a report in

The large poultry farm meant for research and promotion of poultry farming in south Orissa had been closed down due to management problems. It was revived and modernised with Central aid. It would serve as a major breeding farm in south Orissa. The chicks produced in this poultry farm would be sold to poultry farmers of Ganjam, Gajapati, Kandhamal and Nayagarh districts.

The Regional Poultry Farm is ready to start its sale of newly-hatched chicks from 29 April. … The farm has decided to specialize in breeding ’Banraj’ breed of poultry. The head of the farm, G.Naresh Kumar informed that at present the animal husbandry department is promoting this breed among rural poultry farmers.

The Banraj breed is being promoted to cash on the market of organic chickens of traditional breeds, which are still grown in large numbers in rural areas in an unorganised manner. The traditional breeds are slow growing yet they have a good market and fetch good price in market. It may be noted that similar poultry farms of the State government at Chiplima, Angul, Cuttack, Bhubaneswar, Sundergarh, Bolangir, Semiliguda and Koraput are also being modernised to meet the increasing need of poultry products in Orissa.

The Government of India has a Department of Animal Husbandry and Diarying under its ministry of Agriculture. That Department has the following sub-ordinating offices, of which three are in Orissa. Orissa should try to get a Fisheries division office.

I. Animal Husbandry Division

  1. # Central Cattle Breeding Farm, P.O. Dhamrod, District Surat, Gujarat.
  2. # Central Cattle Breeding Farm, Andesh Nagar, District Lakhimpur, (UP).
  3. # Central Cattle Breeding Farm, Similiguda, P.O. Sunabada (Koraput) Orissa.
  4. # Central Cattle Breeding Farm, Suratgarh (Rajasthan).
  5. # Central Cattle Breeding Farm, Chiplima, P.O. Basantpur, District Samalpur, (Orissa).
  6. # Central Cattle Breeding Farm, Avadi, Alamadhi (Madras).
  7. # Central Cattle Breeding Farm,P.O. Hessarghatta, Bangalore North.
  8. # Central Frozen Semen Production and Training Institute, Hessarghatta, Bangalore North.
  9. # Central Herd Registration Unit, W-15, Jagdish Colony, Rohtak (Haryana).
  10. # Central Herd Registration Unit, W-34, G.N.M. Colony, Christian Ganj, Ajmer – 305 001.
  11. # Central Herd Registration Unit, 10, Gautam Vihar, Cooperative Society Building, Usmanpura, Ahmedabad.
  12. # Central Herd Registration Unit, Santhapat, Ongole 523 001, District Prakasam (A.P.)
  13. # Regional Station for Forage Production & Demonstration, P.O. Netaji Subhash Sanitorium, Kalyani, Distt Nadia (W Bengal).
  14. # Regional Station for Forage Production & Demonstration, 48, Rajbagh (Extension) Srinagar (J&K).
  15. # Regional Station for Forage Production & Demonstration, Suratgarh (Rajasthan).
  16. # Regional Station for Forage Production & Demonstration, P.O. Textile Mill Hissar (Ha ryana)_.
  17. # Regional Station for Forage Production & Demonstration, GA 128/2, Sector No. 30, Gandhinagar, (Gujarat).
  18. # Regional Station For Forage Production & Demonstration, Avadi, Alamadhi, (Madras)-600052.
  19. # Regional Station for Forage Production & Demonstration, Mamidipally, Via Keshavagiri, Hyderabad – 500005.
  20. # Central Fodder Seed Production Farm, Hessarghatta, Bangalore North.
  21. # Animal Quarantine & Certification Service Station, Delhi -Gurgaon Road, Kapashera Village, New Delhi.
  22. # Animal Quarantine & Certification Service Station, Velachary Main Road, P.O. Pallikarni Village, Madras – 601 302.
  23. # Animal Quarantine & Certification Service Station, Village Gopalpur, P.O. Gopalpur, Distt Choubis parganas (W Bengal).
  24. # Animal Quarantine & Certification Service Station, Bombay – 400 065.
  25. # Central Sheep Breeding Farm, P.O. Box No. 10, Hissar – 125 001 (Haryana).
  26. # Central Poultry Development Organization, Southern Region, Hessarghatta, Bangalore North.
  27. # Central Poultry Development Organization, Eastern Region, Bhubaneshwar.
  28. # Central Poultry Development Organization, Western Region, Aarey Milk Colony, Mumbai.
  29. # Central Poultry Development Organization, Northern Region, Industial Area Chandigarh.
  30. # Random Sample Poultry Performance Testing Centre, 69/4, Urban Estate, Gurgaon (Haryana).

II Dairy Development Division

  1. # Delhi Milk Scheme, West Patel Nagar, New Delhi.

III Fisheries Division

  1. # Central Institute of Coastal Engineering For Fishery, Bangalore
  2. # Central Institute of Fisheries Nautical and Engineering Training, Cochin.
  3. # Integrated Fisheries Project, Cochin.
  4. # Fisheries Survey of India, Mumbai.
  5. # Aquaculture Authority, Chennai.

Cold storage and distribution channel can make Orissa self-sufficient in fruits and vegetables: Samaja

Cold storage, Horticulture, Vegetables 1 Comment »

Mission Biofuels proposes to set up a Biodiesel refinery in Orissa

BioTech, Pharma, INVESTMENTS and INVESTMENT PLANS, Jatropha 3 Comments »

Following is from a report in Expressbuzz.

The Mission Biofuels India Pvt Limited has submitted a proposal to the State Government to set up a biodiesel refinery in Orissa.

The Mumbai-based company has sought 35 hectares of land to set up the refinery at an estimated cost of Rs 350 crore. Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the company Asish Swaroop today met Chief Secretary Ajit Kumar Tripathy at the Secretariat to discuss the proposal.

The company gave a power point presentation on the project.

The project is expected to give returns from the fourth year. It is estimated that 3 kg of jatropha yields one litre of bio-diesel, the production cost of which comes to around Rs 22. The company has invested Rs 40 crore for taking up jatropha cultivation in 12 districts of the State. The cultivation will be taken up on the land of BPL families with the National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (NREGS) funds.

Around five lakh acres will be covered by 2011 for which a 200-member team of the company is working in Orissa to promote jatropha cultivation.

Bamboo trade potential of Orissa

Bamboo 2 Comments »

Following is excerpted from a report in Economic Times.

… Bamboo, one of the most important forest produces in Orissa, is mostly used as raw material for the paper industry. However, it has great potential in Orissa for its multiple uses if managed well. Orissa has 9% of the country’s total bamboo forest cover and 7% of total growing stock of bamboo.

According to a study done by the Beijing-based International Network for Bamboo and Rattan, the market potential of bamboo and bamboo products from Orissa is more than Rs 600 crore per annum. This could increase at double the existing rate at 3.9%.

The state will require to produce 6.45 lakh tonne of raw bamboo every year to meet the demand of increasing market of bamboo. The state produces only 1.8 lakh tonne per annum. Bamboo in forest areas of Orissa grows as a mixed crop associated with sal and other species.

The mixed bamboo forest area is spread over about 17,795 sq km and pure bamboo forest (occurring mostly as bamboo brakes) is about 375 sq km. There are about 13 species of bamboo available in the state. The study says some 13 lakh villagers, most of them tribal, are directly dependent on bamboo production and business related to bamboo and its products.

“The maximum annual earning from current livelihood options — working in agricultural land, as labour and making bamboo handicrafts — in the surveyed villages is Rs 10,000. “Involvement in bamboo plantation and primary processing of bamboo by tribal communities can provide additional incomes up to Rs 12,000 per year. The potential of bamboo as a sustainable livelihood solution to the community in Orissa is thus a reality,” according to the study.

Orissa Bamboo Development Agency (OBDA) with support from National Bamboo Mission (NBM) and National Mission on Bamboo Application (NMBA) has already started promoting many alternative uses of bamboo like house building materials, particle boards, corrugated sheets, mat boards, ply boards, handicrafts, furniture, energy and charcoal, textile fibre and food.

The fresh young shoots (karadis in local name) procured from the forests by the tribals are also used as food and for adding taste and flavour in many regular dishes (after drying, locally known as hendua). Besides, most of the species of bamboo available in the state have edible shoots.

These shoots are of very high nutritional value, with low fat and considerable content of fibre, vitamins, and cellulose and amino acids, which make them a food item with great market potential. Meanwhile, OBDA has joined hands with Xavier Institute of management to explore the potential of bamboo and bamboo products from within and outside the state, according to Prof Neeraj Kumar, a faculty of rural management.


ADB grant for irrigation

Irrigation, Loans, Odisha govt. action, River linking Comments Off on ADB grant for irrigation

Following is from a report in Pragativadi.

The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has agreed to give 188 US million dollar as loan for the improvement in the irrigation sector of Orissa. The funds would be spent under the Orissa Irrigated Agriculture and Water Management programme. Under this project, Budhabalanga, Baitarani, Subarnarekeha and Chitrotpala basin will be inter-linked.  Besides, six major irrigation projects, nine medium and 1,400 lift irrigation points would be set up that would facilitate irrigation in 2.24 lakh hectare of lands. A tripartite agreement was signed in New Delhi by the Centre, the ADB and the Orissa government. As per the agreement, ADB will provide 47 US million dollar in the first phase. The state government will repay the money at a five per cent interest in a period of 25 years.

Three world class agricultural terminals to be built in Orissa: Samaja

Agricultural terminal Comments Off on Three world class agricultural terminals to be built in Orissa: Samaja

Medicinal plant Ashwagandha: Samaja

Medicinal plants 1 Comment »

Farming calendar for April: Samaja

Monthly and seasonal calendar Comments Off on Farming calendar for April: Samaja

Bamboo cultivation

AGRICULTURE & FARMING, Samaja (in Odia) Comments Off on Bamboo cultivation

Water management for Dalua paddy cultivation: Samaja

Rice-n-Paddy Comments Off on Water management for Dalua paddy cultivation: Samaja

Honey production and marketing by Orissa Khadi board; its other initiatives

Honey 11 Comments »

Following is an excerpt from a news report in New Indian Express.

… honey would soon be available in pouches.

The board plans to take up this project once the proposed modern honey processing unit starts functioning on its premises. It has already received a grant of Rs 18 lakh for the unit.

Board secretary Manmohan Rath said, their ultimate goal is to increase honey production substantially in the State and popularise its consumption. At present, honey consumption in the State stands at 18 gram per head as against the countrywide figure of 38 grams.

The Government is in the process of setting up bee keeping nurseries in Bhawanipatna, Balangir, Koraput and Rayagada. He said, the ensuing programmes would entail employment generation and supplementary income to BPL families.

On promotion of khadi and raising production capacity, he said a production-cum-training centre would be set up at a cost of Rs 1 crore here.

Modern 10 spindle charkhas will be used in the centre. The Khadi Board has so far created about 3,100 rural entrepreneurs and provided employment opportunities to about 29,000 people under the Rural Employment Generation Programme (REGP).

The nine-day REGP exhibition, which concluded here today, provided such entrepreneurs a platform to showcase their produce. The secretary said, plans are afoot to take up a Rs 3-crore project at Khaprakhol block in Balangir district, a rich cotton growing region.

The project is basically for setting up a khadi centre producing superior quality thread. It will also provide employment opportunities to about 500 persons. The success of the project might also check migration from the region.

Disclosing plans for popularising bamboo items, Rath said a Rs 50-lakh pilot project has been presented to the Khadi Commission for value addition of bamboo items. The project will directly benefit another 500 families.