With a growth rate of 7.5 per cent per annum, the Indian silk industry — which contributes nearly 28,700 tonnes (16.12 per cent) of silk to the total world output, is expected to become self-reliant by 2020, meeting the demands of domestic silk market.
At present, India imports 6,000 to 8,000 tonnes of raw silk and silk fabric from China to meet the growing domestic demand (around 34,000 tonnes), besides exporting silk worth Rs. 3,000 crore a year.
Speaking to reporters in Mysuru on Monday, Central Silk Board Member Secretary H. Nagesh Prabhu said that India doubled its raw silk production in the last 10 years from 15,000 tonnes a year to almost 29,000 tonnes a year.
Research and development had contributed immensely to boost production, in addition to the new silkworm productive breeds, high yielding mulberry varieties, quality disease-free layings, scientifically-designed rearing shed, mounting devices, and high performance reeling devices.
Dr. Prabhu said bivoltine silk production had doubled within a year as the output had gone up from 1,700 tonnes in 2013-14 to 3,800 tonnes in 2014-15.
He said that Rs. 720 crore would be spent in north-eastern States for the next three years to boost bivoltine silk production.
THE SILK ROUTE
India produces 74% of mulberry silk and 26% of Eri,
Tasar and Muga varieties
It is ranked second after China with an annual output
of 28,700 tonnes
Over 55% of stakeholders in silk industry are women
Over 8.3 million people are employed in the industry