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Work on commercialising unique agri commodities of Uttarakhand: Guv to varsity

Noting that Uttarakhand’s potential in the field of agri-tourism remains untapped, governor KK Paul on Thursday asked the GB Pant University to work on commercialisation of the under-utilised agri-commodities unique to the state to attract visitors

dehradun Updated: Nov 16, 2017 21:01 IST
Press Trust of India
Press Trust of India
Press Trust of India
agri commodities,agri-tourism,GB Pant University
Chancellor KK Paul felicitates Kavita Bisht, a gold medal winner, at the GB Pant Agriculture University at Pantnagar on Thursday.(HT Photo)

Noting that Uttarakhand’s potential in the field of agri-tourism remains untapped, governor KK Paul on Thursday asked the GB Pant University to work on commercialisation of the under-utilised agri-commodities unique to the state to attract visitors.

Talking about numerous varieties of medicinal and aromatic plants found in the hills of Uttarakhand, Paul suggested that the university could devise methods to increase their commercial viability so that people in the rural areas of the state could take up their cultivation on a large scale.

“There is a vast potential for agri-tourism in Uttarakhand.Its hills are known for medicinal and aromatic plants and cultivation of these crops on large scale by a cluster of farmers can turn out to be a boon for them,” Paul said while addressing the 31st convocation of the GB Pant University of Agriculture and Technology, Pantnagar.

Citing low productivity of crops in the hills as a major concern, he said farmers face problems of storage, supply chain, minimum support price and the lack of farm processing facilities.

“The low yield of, agricultural crops, fodder, forest produce, livestock coupled with shortage of feed and fodder, sluggish growth rate are the critical factors of agrarian hill economy adversely affecting household food security. The university must look into these aspects,” he said.

The university should work on mapping of fruits, vegetables, flowers and other perishable agri-commodities growing in clusters to enable the processing units to ensure good quality raw material, reduce procurement cost and increase profitability in the long run on a sustainable basis, he said.

“Exploration, utilisation and commercialisation of underutilised indigenous fruit, flower and vegetable crops would help greatly,” he said.

Congratulating the university graduates who were conferred with their degrees, the governor said G B Pant University had always provided excellent services to the nation and had played an important role in making the country self-dependent in food security.

“Having ushered India into an era of Green Revolution, the university now needs to ensure the country’s nutritional security. A food sovereign nation is a free nation in a true sense of the word,” the governor said.

Agriculture minister Subodh Uniyal advised the univesrity to set up a centre for research and development where aspects like organic farming, value enhancement of products offarmers in Uttarakhand could be researched.

First Published: Nov 16, 2017 21:01 IST