Horticulture Department to focus on high value crops, up availability of fruits for value addition
SRINAGAR: Director Horticulture, Kashmir Ajaz Ahmad Bhat Sunday disclosed that the Department of Horticulture will distribute 10,000 lemon and 1000 pecan fruit plants among the fruit growers of the area for production of high value crops which will cater the demand of local and adjoining Districts like Kupwara, Bandipora, Srinagar in the coming few years.
Besides, the Department will focus on the production of such crops which will provide raw material for the Food Processing Units for preservation and value addition of other related crops which will change the Scio-economic status of the local habitat in near feature.
Director Horticulture, Kashmir Ajaz Ahmad Bhat Sunday conducted an extensive tour of District Baramulla. The Director was accompanied by Chief Horticulture officer Baramulla and other field officers of the Department. The Director Horticulture took a short meeting with the field Officers wherein he was briefed about the ongoing works in the District. He impressed upon the Officers to speed up the execution of all pending work within the stipulated time frame.
He also visited various orchards in the area and instructions were given to field staff to provide technical knowhow to the growers particularly on orchard management. Director Horticulture also visited various Departmental nurseries and issued strict instructions to Chief Horticulture Officer to develop the mother orchards of different varieties in these nurseries and multiply latest high quality root stocks.
He took a detailed stock of a high density plantation programme as an activity to increase the returns manifold. During his visit, he also visited Salamabad Uri Fruit Plant Nursery and interacted with the fruit growers of that habitat. Director Horticulture distributed fruit plants of various species like lemon, pecan, Olive under Backyard Horticulture Scheme for development of Horticulture in Uri sector. It was for the first time when quality Citrus plants, particularly lemon and pecan fruit plants were introduced as high value crops for its cultivation in such areas for the upliftment of farmers community.
Director Horticulture was pleased to see the enthusiasm of the farming community for their interests in establishment of new orchards in their available farm land. During interaction with the growers, Director Horticulture highlighted the developmental schemes implemented by the department and also described the incentive being provided to the orchardists and other stakeholders. He further informed that the Department will focus on production of quality walnut fruit crops from Uri sector and the District Administration concerned will be approached for identifying feasible land for the establishment of Fruit Plant Nursery in such areas so as to propagate the required fruit plants for establishment of regular orchards in near future.