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Odisha Government on Mission Onion Mode

The Agriculture Department is working out modalities for launching an Onion Mission in the lines of State Potato Mission to combat soaring prices.

Published: 10th February 2016 07:08 AM  |   Last Updated: 10th February 2016 07:08 AM   |  A+A-

BHUBANESWAR: The Agriculture  Department is working out modalities for launching an Onion Mission in the lines of State Potato   Mission to combat soaring  prices and achieve self-sufficiency in onion production. The  proposed onion mission was discussed at a meeting chaired by Agriculture  Secretary Manoj Ahuja recently. The meeting deliberated  on different aspects including economic status of onion growing  farmers, availability of farm credit, areas under onion cultivation, institutional support to farmers and the  gap in extension services, supply of quality seeds and  storage facility in the State.   “A mission framework will be prepared after thorough deliberation with progressive  farmers, experts in the field, vegetable scientists and other stakeholders,” sources in  the Horticulture Department said.

govt.JPGThe Department is also working out the financial  requirement for launching the mission, the sources  said adding, the Government will be requested to make budgetary provision  for implementation of the programme in a mission mode.  Under the mission, the State Government is planning  to provide quality onion seeds and financial incentives to encourage farmers  to take up onion cultivation on commercial basis. Apart from facilitating farm credit to farmers, the  Government will also ensure proper storage facility,  Agriculture Minister Pradeep Maharathy said. The State Government had announced to launch onion  mission in August last year following acute shortage of the edible bulb in the State.

The State has experienced soaring prices of the vegetable (touching `50 a kg) at least four times  during the last two years. Though the State producesmore onion than its annual requirement, a large quantity goes waste or farmers  are forced to resort to distress sale due to lack of storage facilities. The State  produces around 4 lakh tonne of onion every year against the demand of 2.95 lakh tonne.  Due to lack of storage facilities, the farmers are forced to sell the vegetable to traders from neighbouring States of Andhra Pradesh and Chhattisgarh.  The State mainly depends on Maharashtra, Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh to meet its onion requirement. Scanty rainfall  in these States during the last two years has affected the onion crop leading  to price rise. Meanwhile, the State Government has taken up measures for construction of about 26,000 low cost storage structures in major  onion producing districts.     



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