The Rubber Board has decided to provide financial assistance to the Rubber Producers' Societies (RPSs) and Self Help Groups (SHGs) to develop various primary infrastructure facilities for the strengthening of smallholder sector.

According to a release, the scheme is aimed at the productivity enhancement and quality upgradation of the produce from the sector.

The board has earmarked an outlay of Rs. 29 lakh for this purpose during the current fiscal. The assistance for setting up of an input distribution centre is 50 per cent of actual rent of the building (maximum Rs. 500 per month).

The RPSs and SHGs will also be provided with a portion of their expense for setting up common service centre, rubber nursery and labour bank.

The scheme also has provisions to support RPSs for pollution control and environment protection measures in their community processing centres. Such RPSs will be assisted with 50 per cent of the actual expenditure or maximum Rs. 1 lakh, whichever is less for setting up a new effluent treatment plant.

The financial assistance is also available for cover crop seed collection, plant protection measures, rain guarding and group management of small rubber holdings.

Details can be procured from the regional/field stations of the board.

The scheme is aimed at productivity enhancement and quality upgradation.