December 12, 2018
Bangla Govt to ramp up production of Tulaipanji
From next year, the State Agriculture Department has decided to use paddy transplanter machines for large-scale cultivation of the indigenous tulaipanji rice, in Chopra and Itahar blocks of Uttar Dinajpur district, said a senior official of the State Agriculture Department.
The pilot project on a 3-acre land at Kalua in Hemtabad block in the same district, from August to November, has resulted in 20 per cent more production of the variety.
The process of identifying the areas for cultivation is on, said the official. The variety is suited to grow in places adjacent to rivers, as that is congenial for giving the particular aroma to the rice.
Tulaipanji is cultivated in the Raiganj, Kaliaganj, Hemtabad and Karandighi blocks of Uttar Dinajpur and Kushmandi block of Dakshin Dinajpur. However, the production is lesser than the demand, as a result of which the price is beyond what common people can afford. The new cultivations in Chopra and Itahar blocks would help in easing the situation.
Efforts led by Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee have resulted in increased awareness of, and hence high demand for, several indigenous varieties, tulaipanji and gobindobhog among them, across the country and in foreign markets too.
Tulaipanji is only grown in a few areas in north Bengal. As per figures available with the district administration of Uttar Dinajpur, tulaipanji was cultivated on 6,700 hectares in financial year 2017-18, compared to 5,400 hectares in 2016-17 and 4,600 hectares in 2015-16, and thus, registering a growth of 45 per cent in three years.
The production has also gradually gone up, from 10,120 million tonnes in 2015-16 to 14,740 million tonnes in 2017-18.