TODAY -

Flexing the farming muscles !

James Khangenbam *

 Seasonal foods and produces available at Waithou Keithel :: 22nd April 2022
Seasonal foods and produces available at Waithou Keithel in April 2022 :: Pix - Shankar Khangembam



A surge in population demands scaling up of agricultural products. Potato and Onion are imported to the state on a large scale. When national highways connecting Manipur with the rest of India were under blockade for 121 days during 2011, people did not suffer much in terms of daily food requirements.

More to that the economy of the state is also termed as agrarian. Armed force personnel in the State are also quite a number. One of our locality makes huge profit supplying chicken regularly to their camps. Food business is a big business.

In the contemporary world when the State is developing and the town is growing, certain requirements in terms of skill and unskilled labours arises. Consequently a growth in the number of people living in the State increases and inner line permit system is in place to mark official entry of migrant workers, traders, visitors etc. to Manipur.

There are also quite a lot of Manipuriís living outside of the State as students, officials and working in different sectors. Besides many in the militant camps in neighbouring countries. I hope, I do not sound political in counting the heads, but it seem we are part of the global trend. But vegetables and livestock finds its consumer regardless of native or non-native.

With growing population certain requirements are created in the vegetable, fruit, fish and poultry livestock market. It is a matter of demand and supply. Many visitors like the local rice and make remarks of its sweetness. They love the region for many reasons.

When it comes to conscious consumption, natural farming is all that matters. The increase in demand of vegetable in the market generates great temptation in targeting more yields. The use of chemical fertilizers on a large scale might be a short term benefit as it affects human and soil health. Conscious farming is all that matters.

When it comes to horticulture products, I would like to quote about watermelon production in the State which I witnessed personally. If I remember correctly about a decade back watermelon grown in the State was a scarcity and very small in size, yet tasty.

Nowadays the promotion of watermelon by individual farmers, horticulture department and various stakeholders had yielded good variety with considerably good size in a matter of few years. Many farmers had started growing watermelon and it is produced in large quantity.

The state produces large variety of vegetables in good quantity. It exports ginger, king chilly etc. In the villages people grow vegetable in their farmland and makes it to the market. By improving public transport we can bring in more fresh vegetables from the nooks and corner of the State.

The Mao Market set up by the government from time to time at various places of the Imphal town is a welcome approach and people are loving the variety as well.

Abundant rainfall, vast agricultural land is a gift to the region. Surplus food production is not a lost but export economy. Agriculture could bring wonders to the State economy.

How do we scale up and what is the target ? An assessment to it can bring out a clear vision to the farmers of the State.

Waking up the sleeping soil perhaps calls for simple wisdom like canal irrigation.


* James Khangenbam wrote this article for e-pao.net
The writer can be contacted at jameskhangenbam7(AT)gmail(DOT)com
This article was webcasted on March 27 2023 .



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