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Developmental activities

 

 

 

 

 

   

 

Coconut Development Programme

Coconut continued to be the principal crop of the territory and major contributor to the economy.    The agro climatic and edaphic conditions in the islands are best suited for coconut cultivation.  The coconut production by the end of VIII Five Year Plan was 27.5 million nuts which could be enhanced to 30 million nuts by the end of IX Five Year Plan.   Productivity level of nuts/ha was 10000 during the year 1998-99, which has raised to 10107 in 1999-2000 and at the end of IX Five Year Plan 11400 nuts.  This is much better than the all- India level of 6892 nuts.  Laccadive ordinary, Laccadive micro and Laccadive small varieties still dominate due to their high quality copra, higher percentage of oil content and other economic attributes.  Major constraints which stand in the way of satisfactory improvement of productivity still continues to be the dense population of coconut trees /hectares of area.  Creation of congenial environment by way of ensuring optimum space for the improvement of yield potential is to be strengthened.

         A regular arrangement for meeting the outside demand of coconut seeds and seedlings is not prevailing at present.  Zero tillage and continuous depletion of fertility of the soil is another factor for the low productivity.  There is a vast scope for recycling of degradable coconut waste for the improvement of fertility status and water holding capacity.

        Earlier no much emphasis has been given on post harvest techniques.  Considering the present scenario of Agriculture marketing, stress is to be provided on post harvest techniques.   Some of the tree climbers meet with accidents while climbing and have to retire at the age of almost 50, for whom it is proposed to provide certain welfare measures.  Basic objective of this scheme are:

      i)     Increase production of coconut from unit holding to a level of 55 million    nuts and productivity level to 20000/ha.

ii)    Improve welfare measures for coconut climbing community.

iii)   Spread quality Laccadive varieties to other coconut growing States/U.T.s.

iv)   Extent post harvest Technology and market promotion programme

A lot of enquiries are receiving from growers and organizations at mainland for the supply of Laccadive variety coconut seedlings and seed nuts. In the year 1999-2000, 1.5 lakhs nuts were supplied to a private farm of Maharastra. At present this territory has no regular coconut nursery to meet such demands. Hence, a scheme component has been proposed.

 In earlier days competition among tharaward moopans in this territory was fill the entire land with coconut seedlings. . Hectarage population of trees varies from 250 to 400 trees. Due to close planting growers experience problem not only in low productivity but also loss of 10-15% produce by way of rat menace, control of which is very difficult due to accessibility of rats to move from one end to another through bridging of coconut leaves. Therefore the scheme cutting & removal of  unthrifty/senile/uneconomic old palms by paying Rs.400/-per tree has been proposed to create optimum spacing  into an ultimate objective of improving productivity.

 Post harvest technology is stressed for improving quality of coconut produce.  Due to diversion of traditional coconut climbing community towards wage employments, fishing and other entrepreneurship; coconut harvesting has become a difficult task. Coconuts are allowed to fall naturally on drying . To over come this lacuna, it has been proposed to introduce  mechanical coconut-climbing device as a pilot programme.

 As far this territory is concerned, marketing produce of coconut is copra. Copra is usually made during summer seasons with the availability of sunlight. Coconuts harvested from May to October periods are stored in shed or open yards during when majority of nuts are get germinated and about 20% reduction in kernel content takes place. Also while conversion process of copra during summer season, due to sudden rains quality of copra get lost. In order to overcome Kernel loss due to storage and improve the quality of copra, it has been proposed to introduce mechanical copra driers as a pilot project.

 Considering the present fall on cost of coconut need to go for product diversification and value addition programme has become necessary. In this respect it has been felt necessary to encourage Neera tapping & Jaggary making activities. In order to create a competitive mentality among farmers and coconut climbers it has been proposed to award the coconut producers, Vinegar production and Jaggary makers island wise. Hence this programme has been proposed. Awards @ Rs.4000/- per island per item will be given.

Considering the reduction in coconut price as well as low production due to infestation of coconut mite, growers are trying to find out various attractive remunerative programmes by way of product diversification value of addition. Assistance to 6 Nos of desiccated coconut powder units for initial procurement and transportation of the finished product to mainland is to be extended. Hence this component has been proposed.

 In the IXth Five year plan, under welfare programme for coconut climbers, one time assistance was provided to permanently handicapped persons @ Rs.15000/- and partially handicapped persons @ Rs.7500/-. In fact this one time assistance doesn’t sufficient to meet the requirement of medical expenses once met with a major accident. In this, all persons engaged in coconut climbing will be insured under the group Janatha Personal Accident policy for coconut climbers of New India Insurance Company. Sum insured against death & permanent disability will be Rs.1 lakhs and for partial disability Rs.50000/- premium of Rs.60/head/year will be paid by the Govt.

It is proposed to procure G.I Stiffner to support coconut trees in order to protect houses, dwellings etc during monsoon season. The item  will be supplied to farmers on payment on subsidized cost.

Coconut Development programme  Extensive Inter Crop Management   Human Resource Development in Agriculture  Manures & Fertilizers  Integrated Pest & Disease Management  Agricultural Engineering Services  Research & Development  Land Development & Water Conservation Management   Macro Management Mode   Agricultural Census  Extension Support to U.Ts Including Goa & Sikkim

 

 
 
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