Union Minister tells farmers to emulate their counterparts in Pollachi

The Coir Board of India is satisfied over the potential of coconut production in Pudukottai district and all efforts will be taken to provide subsidy and other benefits being implemented through the Board, said E.M. Sudarsana Natchiappan, Union Minister of State for Commerce and Industries.

Delivering the keynote address at the day-long state-level seminar-cum-exhibition on “coconut development” organised jointly by the Coir Board of India, the Pudukottai District Coconut Farmers’ Federation, and the Aranthangi Coconut Farmers Association here on Saturday, Mr. Sudarsana Natchiappan said that the board, after a survey, had identified the potential of the district in coconut production. He appealed to the coconut farmers to fully utilise the subsidy-based programmes being implemented by the board. Every farmer would get an annual subsidy of Rs. 17,500 a hectare for two years and fertilizers would be supplied to farmers.

With a view to tapping the potential of coconut largely available in this belt, the Union Ministry of Commerce and Industries would set up a coconut and coir handicrafts design centre in Karaikudi. The modalities were worked out in this regard, he said.

Hemachandran, Deputy Director of Coir Board of India, Kochi, explained the steps taken by the board after realising the potential of Pudukottai district in coconut production. He appealed to farmers to emulate the example of Pollachi where the producers got prospective returns and ensured quality in produce.

G.S. Dhanapathy, District Chairman of Farmers Forum of India, said the objective of the seminar was to evolve ways and means for value addition in coconut products and for promoting export.

Speakers from various government departments explained the agricultural inputs, subsidy, and compensation being provided by the Union and State governments to coconut growers.

An exhibition was organised as part of the seminar. Mechanisation in coconut cultivation was explained to the visiting coconut growers. It sought to sensitise the visitors on marketing coconut and value-added produce.

A large number of coconut farmers from across the State participated in the seminar.