Govt allows 5 firms for cluster farming
Desai Agrifoods, FIL Industries, Sahyadri Farms, Meghalaya Basin Management Agency and Prasad Seeds will undertake farming of specific horticulture crops in 50,000 ha with Rs 750cr investment
Desai Agrifoods’s Rs 103 crore ‘banana cluster’ project will be developed in Ananthapuram, Andhra Pradesh, while Prasad Seeds will develop a ‘mango cluster’ in Mahabubnagar, Telangana
New Delhi: The Centre has allowed five private firms to undertake cluster farming of specific horticulture crops in about 50,000 hectares on a pilot basis entailing an investment of Rs 750 crore, including government subsidy - a moved aimed at making Indian produce globally competitive and boost farmers' income.
Desai Agrifoods, FIL Industries, Sahyadri Farms, Meghalaya Basin Management Agency, and Prasad Seeds are five companies selected for pilot cluster farming through a bidding process.
The Centre will give financial assistance up to Rs 100 crore depending on the size of the project under the recently launched central scheme Cluster Development Programme (CDP), which is implemented by the National Horticulture Board with an outlay of Rs 2,200 crore.
Priya Ranjan, Joint Secretary in the Agriculture Ministry, said, the cluster-based approach has seen an incredible amount of success across the world. In India, the government for the first time is encouraging market-led development of entire value chain of specific horticulture crops by giving financial assistance.
"These five companies are spread across an area of almost 50,000 hectares and cover around 55,000 farmers. The investment within these clusters is about Rs 750 crores," he said.
For instance, Desai Agrifoods's Rs 103 crore 'banana cluster'' project will be developed in Ananthapuram, Andhra Pradesh, Sahyadri Farms' Rs 205 crore 'grapes cluster' project will come up in Nasik, Maharashtra, while Meghalaya Basin Management Agency's Rs 52 crore 'turmeric cluster' project will be developed in West Jaintia Hills, he said. FIL Industries will develop an 'apple cluster' in Shopian, Jammu and Kashmir, while Prasad Seeds will develop a 'mango cluster' in Mahabubnagar, Telangana, he added.