Business / Industry Sectors
Walk-in tunnels to boost vegetable produce in Gujarat
18/03/2014
The tunnels will be promoted by a Centre of Excellence for vegetable cultivation being established under the second Indo-Israel Working Project

These tunnels will be promoted by a Centre of Excellence for vegetable cultivation being established under the second Indo-Israel Working Project near Prantij in Sabarkantha District of North Gujarat. Two other such centres are also being established with technical assistance from Israel at Talala and Kutch for mango and date palm cultivation. These centres are being set up to help farmers take to applied research, something missing in the Gujarat scenario. The centre in Prantij is spread over 20 hectares and 11 of these are being used for vegetable cultivation.

The walk-in tunnels are tunnelled structures that can be covered either with nets of different types or polythene as per the requirement of the farmer. "They do not require much space, are temporary in nature and above all they cost very little. The unit cost works out to be about Rs 500 to Rs 600 per square metre," an official said.

He said besides fewer inputs, these tunnels offer freedom from insects, pests and weeds.

The government has floated tenders for procuring the tunnels for the Prantij centre from where the mode of cultivation will be propagated after the centre takes off by the year-end.

"Once we have the tunnels ready, we will be offering farmers from across Gujarat seedlings, training and field consultancy. Our effort is to promote precision farming. We will also offer the farmers hands on experience at the centre," an official said.

Experts from Israel will be coming to Gujarat to interact with farmers on this technique after the Lok Sabha polls.

The reason why Sabarkantha has been chosen as the centre for promoting walk-in tunnels is that the district has done well in protected cultivation, adapting to micro and drip irrigation. It excels in production of cauliflower and cabbage and is easily accessible to the state capital.

 

Source: THE TIMES OF INDIA. RAJK0T

Image courtesy: www.bing.com

 

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