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Cashew Cultivation Extended to Rajasthan & Madhya Pradesh

Chander Mohan
Chander Mohan

The cashew cultivation is generally done on the coastal line of India. Four centuries ago, the adventurous Portuguese came sailing down the Indian coasts and brought with them the priceless tree nut  "Cashew”, the wonder nut of the world. Cashew came, conquered and took deep roots in the entire coastal region of India. Cashew found the Indian soil more homely than its homeland. Later it spread as a popular crop to other parts of  India. Cashew cultivation at the present covers a total area of 0.70 million hectares of land, producing over 0.40 million M.T. of raw cashew nuts yearly.

In view of the export potential of the wonder nut the Cashew, the export promotion council of the cashew proposed the extended scope of the cultivation in other states of India also. 

The cashew cultivation is now being extended to non-traditional States such as Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan, according to Venkatesh N Hubballi, Director of the Kochi-based Directorate of Cashew nut and Cocoa Development (DCCD).

On the occasion of the Foundation Day celebrations of the Directorate of Cashew Research (DCR) at Puttur in Dakshina Kannada district of Karnataka, he said cashew would be planted in about 2,000 hectares in Madhya Pradesh in 2019-20.

Its cultivation was initiated in Betul region of Madhya Pradesh in 2018-19, and varieties such as Vengurla-4 and Vengurla-7 are doing well there. The region has witnessed more than 90 per cent success rate till now.

Cashew cultivation will be introduced in Rajasthan in 2019-20. Though the survey is yet to be done, plans are there to cover about 150 hectares in that State, he said.

Stating that cashew is being cultivated in 19 States now, he said Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan are the recent additions. Steps will be taken to intensify cashew cultivation in Andhra Pradesh, Jharjkhand, Chattisgarh, Gujarat, Tripura and Meghalaya among others.

Based on the suggestion of Prime Minister Narendra Modi to give a more focused attention on cashew cultivation, DCCD had made a project proposal to take up cashew cultivation on 1.2 lakh hectares in 2017. The Agriculture Ministry has approved the plan.

Following this, cashew cultivation was taken up on 48,000 hectares in the country. Hubballi said there are plans to take up cashew cultivation on at least additional 50,000 hectares during 2019-20.  Subhash Rai, a cashew grower from the region, who spoke at the foundation day celebrations earlier, stressed the need to form a farmers’ association at the national- level to provide a level-playing field for cashew growers in the country.

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