HYDERABAD: Considering the acceptance and success of ‘farm fresh vegetables on wheels’ project launched in January, the state horticulture department now plans state-wide expansion and implementation of the same.
The project was launched on a pilot basis in Rangareddy, Medak and Mehbubnagar districts. The objective was to provide better returns to farmers on their produce by eliminating touts and middle-men and also enabling growers to directly sell their produce to buyers in the cities, transporting fruits and vegetables using vans.
As many as 20 Tata Ace vans were handed over to ‘vegetable farmer societies’ in Rangareddy, Medak and Mehbubnagar districts, registered under horticulture department.
“The project has been well received by farmers and considering the demand in other districts for similar benefits, we have formulated the action plan to be placed before the union government. We hope to take the project to other districts by early 2013,” said Dr Padmavathi, project incharge and assistant director, department of horticulture, adding that around 200 more vans would be handed over to such societies on receipt of approval from the central government.
According to department of horticulture, the state capital alone consumes 40 lakh metric tonnes of vegetables per annum and is mainly supported by vegetable inflow from Rangareddy, Medak and Mehbubnagar districts.
“These 3 districts are vegetable feeders for the state. With directions from the centre, a project titled ‘Metro City Hyderabad Project’ was implemented in December 2011 on a pilot basis in these three districts,” reminded the assistant director. The project is aimed at enhancing agricultural productivity and providing marketing support to farmers to become self-sufficient, form a federation, develop business plans and market their products.