Tiruchirapalli

Organic ginger cultivation will be a game-changer for tribal farmers of Pachamalai

A tribal woman of Pachamalai with the ginger crop.  

Tiruchi

Taking cue from the success of a pilot project, the tribal residents of Pachamalai have decided to raise ginger as an organic crop on 10 acres of land.

Tapioca has been a predominant crop in the Pachamalai for several decades, fetching ₹5-7 per kilogram.

Under a tribal development project titled Hand in Hand, being implemented on Pachamalai hills with the financial support of National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development, a group of tribesmen was taken on a visit to a KVK institution and model farmers’ fields in Wayanad, Kerala, for exploring various cash crops and to learn the best practices so as to introduce the viable crops in Pachamalai.

Ginger crop was selected as a viable one for this location. On a trial basis, 20 farmers were provided with the quality ginger “rhizome“ seeds procured from Wayanad district vegetable and fruits cooperative society in the end of March 2020, before the COVID-19 lockdown. Towards cultivating them organically, the sustainable practices were taught to the farmers by Hand in Hand India project team.

During the trial, a high yield after 8-9 months was determined by Chandran of Nathilipatti. Following the success of ginger crop, 100 more persons have shown interest to take up organic ginger cultivation in the current season with partial support from project grant.

V.P. Elumalai, project manager, said that ginger would be raised on 100 acres in Pachamalai hills. The cultivation would begin in February and it would mature in November or December.

Y. Joe, vice-president, Hand in Hand, said that ginger would emerge as a major alternative crop to tapioca. It would be a game-changer for the tribesmen of Pachamalai. Organic ginger had a great demand and their revenue would go up by at least five times.

Owing to the bountiful harvest and premium price, Pachamali tribal villages would soon become a hub for organic ginger with restoration of soil ecology, he said.

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Printable version | Mar 8, 2021 7:28:19 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Tiruchirapalli/organic-ginger-cultivation-will-be-a-game-changer-for-tribal-farmers-of-pachamalai/article33651235.ece

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