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FRUITS & VEGETABLE

Tripura keen on NERAMAC revival to promote horticulture in North-East
Monday, 16 July, 2018, 08 : 00 AM [IST]
Khyati Das, Mumbai
The Government of Tripura appears to be keen to revive North-Eastern Regional Agricultural Marketing Corporation Limited (NERAMAC), promoted by the Ministry of Development of North-Eastern Region (DONER), Government of India, as an enterprise to promote horticulture in the region.

Biplap Kumar Deb, the state chief minister, said, “The move to restart the revival plan is to bridge the gap between the farmers and the market. This will result in the welfare of the north-eastern region and market infrastructure.”

He added that the government has already taken steps to promote the cultivation of the Queen variety of pineapple and its processing.

“This, along with DONER’s plan to restart the fruit processing unit in Dhalai, a district in Tripura, shall complement the project in the region,” Deb said.  

He added that the North-Eastern Council (NEC) ,which acts as an nodal marketing agency for the economic and social development of the north-eastern region, had also reacted positively to the move.

It must be mentioned here that under NERAMAC, there were two major units engaged in pineapple contraction and cashew processing., in addition to a ginger unit in Meghalaya. However, all three now stand shut.

Sharing his views, Pradip Chakrabarty, assistant manager, NERAMAC, informed, “Currently, no activities have started on ground to revamp NERAMAC. And it would take large-scale restoration efforts to set things right.”

He added, “Although pineapple is a summer fruit, it is produced round the year in the state due to favourable weather conditions and a few technological interventions.”

“Earlier, the processing capacity of pineapples was two metric tonne per hour. It later reduced to one metric tonne per hour, resulting in losses, and subsequently, the production of the fruit was reduced. So, it was decided that the corporation would be shut down in 2010,” Chakrabarty stated.

Queen and Q are the two main variants of pineapples cultivated in the North-Eastern region. While the former is sweet, the latter has a low sugar percentage. NERAMAC primarily exports pineapples to Dubai, and in India, mostly to Delhi and Guhawati.
 
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