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Context: Initiatives are underway to promote the cultivation of GI-tagged Onattukara sesame.
- The effort to expand the cultivation of GI-tagged Onattukara sesame is a multifaceted initiative involving various stakeholders and incentives to enhance sesame farming in the region.
Overview of the Expansion Efforts:
- Stakeholders Involved: The initiative is a joint effort involving several entities: the local Krishi Bhavan, Onattukara Vikasana Agency (OVA), Onattukara Regional Agricultural Research Station (ORARS), Krishi Vigyan Kendra, Kayamkulam, and Mavelikara Thekkekara panchayat.
- Current Status: At present, Onattukara sesame is cultivated across 600 hectares in 43 local bodies spread across Alappuzha, Kollam, and Pathanamthitta districts.
- Expansion Objective: The aim is to significantly increase the cultivation area to 2,000 hectares under sesame, a goal set by the OVA, the registered owner of the GI-tagged sesame seeds.
Initiatives and Incentives
- Incentive Scheme: The authorities have announced a financial incentive scheme to encourage sesame cultivation. Farmers in the Thekkekara Krishi Bhavan limits will receive ₹40 for a cent of land dedicated to sesame farming.
- Seed Distribution: The seeds will be distributed from Thekkekara Krishi Bhavan to facilitate the cultivation process.
- Procurement Strategy: OVA plans to purchase the sesame produced under the scheme at market prices, ensuring a market for the farmers' produce.
- Targeted Beneficiaries: Various groups like individuals, farming collectives, Kudumbashree groups, self-help groups, and joint liability groups will receive incentives to promote sesame cultivation.
Unique Features of Onattukara Sesame:
- Medicinal Value: According to an analysis by the Kerala Agricultural University, Onattukara sesame holds medicinal properties. It contains high levels of Vitamin E, antioxidants, oleic acid, linoleic acid, palmitoleic acid, among others, contributing to better health.
- Varietal Cultivation: Apart from the traditional Ayali variety, farmers in the region are cultivating varieties like Kayamkulam-1, Thilak, Thilathara, and Thilarani, all developed by ORARS.
- The expansion plan involves a comprehensive approach, encompassing financial incentives, resource support, seed distribution, and leveraging the medicinal properties and diversity of sesame varieties in the region. The involvement of multiple stakeholders signifies a concerted effort to boost sesame cultivation in Onattukara and elevate its significance in the agricultural landscape.
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GI TAGS LIST UPDATED: https://www.iasgyan.in/daily-current-affairs/gi-tags-list-updated
Q. Why is promoting indigenous varieties of seeds crucial, and how does their preservation benefit agricultural sustainability and biodiversity?