Itanagar, April 21: Carrying forward his mission to promote agro-based industries in the State, Arunachal Pradesh Deputy Chief Minister Chowna Mein has urged the Spice Board of India to expedite the process of setting up two auction centers for spices at Namsai and Kimin.
Mein, who visited the head office of Spice Board of India and Synthite which is the world leading manufacturer of value added spices at Kochi on Friday, lamented that despite the availability of land and allocation of Rs 1 crore fund for setting up of the auction centers in the last financial year, the State Horticulture department and Spice Board could not make any headway in this regard, an official report stated.
During interaction with the directors- Siddaramappa S (director finance) and Dr A B Remashree (director R & D)- and officials of the Board, the Deputy Chief Minister said the fund has been kept in this year’s budget too and called upon the officials to coordinate with the Horticulture department for setting up the centers at the earliest.
"There is huge scope for cultivation of spice crops in Arunachal Pradesh and the State is one of the potential producers of large cardamom besides ginger, turmeric, pepper and chillies," he said.
"It can’t be converted into revenue generating resources unless we activate and accelerate ourselves," Mein said and called upon the officers of Horticulture department to work harder for the economic uplift of the farmers.
To ensure that the spice culture is promoted in a larger way in the State, all the welfare measures and schemes need to be percolated down to the farmers, Mein said.
Mein was happy to learn that the Spices Farmer Producer Companies (SFPC) at Namsai for ginger has been successfully registered on April 17 last, which is the first registered SFPC in the State and thanked the Board for their initiative. He was also said that the registration of the second SFPC for large cardamom at Ziro is under process.
However, the board sought the support of the State government for persuasion of the project for the establishment of SFPCs in the North East Region, the proposal of which had been submitted to the NEC for necessary funding.
The officials of the board also made a power-point presentation highlighting their activities in the State and the North East region.
While interacting with Chief Executive Officer of Synthite Aju Jacob and his team, Mein invited the manufacturer for starting contract farming in the State for organic turmeric.
He said: "By way of contract farming, the company can help the farmers of the State by providing quality sapling, technical know-how, which in turn would help to improve the economy of the State,"
Mein also invited the officials of the Spice Board and CEO of Synthite to the Agriculture Conclave at Itanagar that is scheduled to be held on May 18 to 19 and to put forward their suggestions and help in drawing a road map for the resurgence of agriculture in the State.