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Haryana sets up quality control labs for fruit

With the growing concerns for food safety among consumers and facilitate farmers on the norms of optimum use of pesticides, the Haryana Horticulture Department is setting up two Quality Control Labs, one at Gharaunda of Karnal district and other at Sirsa at a cost of Rs 2 crore each. These labs would start functioning in the next six months.

As the state government has been projecting a shift from wheat-paddy to horticulture to save soil health and water table in the state, such infrastructure is imperative to encourage farmers for horticulture crops.

Horticulture and Tourism Departments are jointly organising 23rd Mango Mela on Saturday and Sunday at Yadvindra Gardens, Pinjore. This is an annual event organised for the last 22 years in which farmers of six states namely Haryana, Punjab, Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh, Uttrakhand and Himachal Pradesh participate.

The Director General, Horticulture, A S Saini said that the major objective of this event is to acquaint the farmers with the knowledge to increase production and productivity of their mango crop besides making the people aware about different mango varieties. The small, marginal and progressive mango growers participate in this mela to display their mango produce. The mango growers also bring their produce for sale to the people in this mela. The stake holders from different states in the field of mango cultivation and mango processed products also participate in this mega mango event, he added.

He said government is making all efforts to increase the area of mango cultivation. To encourage the farmers to grow mango, Horticulture Department is providing 50 per cent assistance at the rate of Rs 30,000 per hectare under National Horticulture Mission. In addition to this, Department is also providing assistance of Rs 10,000 per hectare for promotion of organic farming of mango, Rs 8 per corrugated box for packing of mango fruit with maximum limit of 500 farmers and also Rs 20,000 per hectare for rejuvenation of old orchards.

He said that a Centre for Sub-Tropical Fruits is being established at Ladwa, Kurukshetra on an area of 12 hectures with an investment of Rs. nine crore. This project will be completed by the end of 2015. Main objective of the project is to sustain and developed Sub-Tropical Fruit Cultivation in Haryana and introduction of improved verities of mango. Department has imported poly embryonic rootstock and has planted 22 varieties of mango imported from different States and Israel. Apart from this, different technologies would be demonstrated as high density plantation and mechanizations in such plantations in the future, he added.

Saini said that this year an amount of Rs. two crore has been earmarked for the horticulture growers for insurance of crops against weather perils like excess rainfall, deficit rainfall, frost, temperature, relative humidity etc. which are deemed to cause “Adverse Weather Incidence” leading to crop loss.

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