Raipur (Chhattisgarh) [India], May 27 (ANI): The farmers of Chhattisgarh's Kondagaon have welcomed the innovative initiative to opt for the cultivation of medicinal aromatic plants.
After receiving Forest Land Rights, the farmers have planted alternative cash crops in their forest lands to try a different approach to farming rather than just practising the traditional mode of paddy farming. The processing units for the value addition process to these aromatic plants have also been set up in Gauthans.
Earlier, the farmers who were availing just Rs 25,000 as profit by cultivating paddy will be able to earn Rs 75,000 by cultivating aromatic medicinal crops. The marketplace for selling the product has also been marked to make the selling process easy. Aromatic crops are being taken by individual farmers, and forest rights clusters of the district which has created huge opportunities for economic potential in the entire region.
It is noteworthy that Chief Minister Bhupesh Baghel launched this initiative on 20 June 2021. These aromatic plants have pro-health and pro-environmental qualities as the oil extracted from certain plants are also used to manufacture mosquito repellants.
It is noteworthy that as per the wishes of Chief Minister Bhupesh Baghel with the aim of increasing the income of the marginal and small farmers of the district, the district administration has started the 'Aromatic Kondanar' campaign for the cultivation of aromatic crops in the district.
A field distillation unit has been established in Rajagaon to extract the aromatic oils from these aromatic crops. This process will help the farmers to get 10 times more profit than traditional crops. The extracted aromatic oil is used in making perfumes, essential oils, medicinal oils, soaps, liquid handwash, sanitisers and mosquito repellents.
Harishchandra Koram, a member of Indira Van Mitan Group, Managing Committee of Aromatic Kondanar, said that after the MoU was signed between the district administration and Sunflag Agrotech, it will be easy to reach the oil markets of Indonesia, Europe and the US where oils extracted in Gauthans can be exported for a significant profit. He said that now the producers will not have to search for a marketplace to sell oil, the aroma of Aromatic Kondanar will itself attract the buyers here.
Aromatic oil extracted from the aromatic plant is also used in manufacturing mosquito repellent. This process of oil extraction will be helpful in the malaria-free Bastar campaign of the state government. Due to this the mortality rate due to malaria will also come down in the region.
Sampat Singh Netam, a resident farmer in the village of Mirdongar, told that he has received a forest rights letter for about 2.5 acres of land from the state government. He has been cultivating paddy for the last several years on this land, from which he used to get an income of approximately 25 thousand per acre annually.
After getting the information about the cultivation of aromatic plants from the district administration, he has started to produce lemongrass on one acre and khus (vetivare) on about one and a half acres. The market price of aromatic oil is Rs 1500 per litre. At this rate, he will receive a profit of 70 to 80 thousand rupees annually per acre which is almost three times the profit he was generating with the traditional model of farming paddy. (ANI)