SRINAGAR: Minister for Horticulture Syed Basharat Bukhari and Minister for Education Syed Mohammad Altaf Bukhari on Wednesday inaugurated Pesticide Testing Laboratory at Directorate of Horticulture Kashmir, an official pres note issued here read. Minister of State for Horticulture and Education, Priya Sethi and Vice Chairmen Horticulture Development Board Abdul Salam Reshi were also present on the occasion.
Built at a cost of Rs 35 lakh, the laboratory is equipped with three system technology which includes Gas Liquid Chromatography, Volumetric Analyses and Spectrophotometer. Currently twenty molecules are being tested in the laboratory, the press note added.
To test rest of the molecules found in pesticides, laboratory required installation of High Performance Liquid Chromatography and Infrared Photo spectrometer. Basharat Bukhari said that the laboratory equipped with latest technology will go a long way in ensuring adherence to national standards for various horticulture produce along with keeping a check on the menace of sale of spurious pesticides in the province. “This will lead the state on the path of certified growth by regulating the use, quantity and quality of pesticides and fungicides,” he added.
Appreciating the efforts of the Horticulture Department, Basharat Bukhari assured that the laboratory will be soon be equipped with remaining technology so that all molecules could be tested with satisfactory results to motivate farmers towards better farming practices.
Speaking on the occasion, Altaf Bukhari stressed for perspective planning for improving quality and production of horticulture crops by integrated implementation of viable, eco-friendly, validated and refined technologies.
He stressed for conducting tests without compromising with quality of results and “to maintain trust of farmer community to motivate them towards better farming practices”.
Appreciating the efforts of horticulture department for establishing and making the laboratory functional within the deadlines, Priya Sethi said integrated approach with appropriate quality control is required to encourage farmers to adopt sustainable measures for boom in horticulture sector.
Later, the ministers visited Soil & Leaf Testing Lab where a team of experts gave live demonstrations of various tests conducted in the lab to track health conditions of plantation.
With advancement in technology, the lab analyses ten parameters to check out soil and plant health which include pH, EC, Organic Carbon, Nitrogen, Phosphorus, Potassium, Zinc, Iron, Manganese and Copper and readings are uploaded on Department of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare Government of India web portal, from where farmers can directly download Soil Health Card, the press note read further. The Soil and Leaf Testing Lab has conducted awareness-cum-live demonstration of soil sample collection technique in and across the state and in coming months all untapped areas will be covered.