State to support pilot project on tissue culture-based banana cultivation

Kolkata: The state Food Processing Industries and Horticulture (FPI&H) department has showed interest in a pilot project, namely MGNREGA-linked banana cultivation to encourage tissue culture based cultivation of the fruit.

Under this scheme, the department will support the farmers having at least 5 cottah of land with banana saplings, other inputs and financial assistance of Rs. 20,000. Senior members of MCCI met state FPI & H minister Subrata Saha at his office on Tuesday and presented a potted plant as a unique green initiative taken by the Chamber . A release from MCCI informed that the project will be implemented shortly in three districts, namely Murshidabad, South 24-Parganas and Jalpaiguri .According to sources in the department, banana cultivation through tissue culture not only ensures high yield but production at a fast pace.

The farmers in the stretch from Bongaon in North 24-Parganas till Nadia are pursuing cultivation through tissue culture. This cultivation is also under taken in Murshidabad district "Banana is one of the highest consumed fruit in the Kolkata market, so we are taking measures to popularise its cultivation through tissue culture. As the production through this technique is huge, it will assure a good income for the farmers, which has always been the thrust of the government," an official in the FPI&H department said.

Bananas produced through tissue culture are resistant to weather fluctuations and in a single bunch of bananas 150 to 200 pieces of the fruit is grown.

The department is also trying to take up intercropping of vegetables at places where such tissue culture of banana cultivation is being done.

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