Kerala

Isaac opens tree banking project in Wayanad

Finance Minister T.M. Thomas Isaac has said that the government was in its final step to set up a coffee processing factory in Wayanad district to market coffee powder under the “Wayanadan Coffee” brand.

Speaking after inaugurating the tree banking project of the Meenangadi grama panchayat through video conferencing here on Tuesday, Mr. Isaac said that the project envisaged ensuring sustainable income to coffee farmers in the district, a major Robusta coffee growing region in the country.

The tree banking project has been launched as part of developing the panchayat as the first “carbon-neutral panchayat” in the country. The carbon neutral project of the civic body would help to market the “Wayanadan coffee” powder even in foreign markets, Mr. Isaac said.

Hence, all grama panchayats should adopt steps to expand the project in the district, he said.

According to the scheme, for each newly planted sapling of the tree species enlisted by the panchayat, a farmer will get ₹50 every year from the second year onwards after the sapling takes root as interest-free loan. The Meenangadi Service Cooperative Bank would provide the loans, Dr. Isaac said.

The government had deposited ₹10 crore in the Meenangadi Cooperative Bank to run the scheme. As each tree under the project would be geo-tagged, the panchayat authorities could easily identify the growth or destruction each plant. The project would take an active role in the social and economic development of the in the district, the Minister said.

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Printable version | Nov 28, 2020 9:58:02 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/kerala/isaac-opens-tree-banking-project-in-wayanad/article32904529.ece

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