New Delhi– A United States firm has collaborated with Farmer Producer Organisations (FPOs) to manufacture nutraceuticals from turmeric ‘Lakadong’, a special turmeric variety that grows in India’s Meghalaya.
In this regard, Union Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar and Meghalaya Chief Minister Conrad K. Sangma on Thursday launched the famous ‘Lakadong’ turmeric in the US through video conferencing.
On this occasion, Tomar praised the peasants of Meghalaya and said that the Centre stands with them shoulder to shoulder for the progress of the annadata (food provider) of the country.
The Union Minister also assured all possible aid from the central government for the development of the agricultural sector in the northeastern states including Meghalaya.
Lauding the Chief Minister for his commitment towards rural development, the Union Minister said: “Today, the fame of his own state’s turmeric has reached worldwide. More such efforts are needed and new FPOs should also be created in the state so that small and poor farmers are benefitted from such steps.”
He said that Meghalaya which is rich in natural beauty, has immense potential in the field of agriculture and medicine.
Tomar said that about 80 per cent of Meghalaya’s population is based on agriculture and the farmers are growing other crops including the best quality turmeric under different climates.
He said, “India is the world’s largest producer of turmeric which contributes more than 80 per cent to global production. According to estimates for the year 2019-20, India produced 9.40 lakh tonnes of turmeric from an estimated area of 2.50 lakh hectares.
India is also the world’s largest exporter of turmeric and Indian turmeric receives a premium price in the international market. About 16 to 17 per cent of the turmeric produced in India is used for export purposes including turmeric powder, curcumin powder, oil and oleoresins. Turmeric exports from India have increased considerably in the last few years. ”
He said that the Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR) has identified the specificity of the ecological condition of Meghalaya, which enables the production of turmeric of the ‘lakadong’ species with much higher curcumin than other places in the state. (IANS)