Kutch which is famously known for its dry land has now become a much-preferred place for Kesar mango. Recently, the farmers have claimed that drip irrigation from groundwater is supporting the prospects for Kutch to become a Kesar mango heartland. Drip irrigation is a method of controlled irrigation in which water is slowly delivered to the root system of multiple plants.
Currently, Gir Somnath district in Saurashtra is known as mango heartland. According to the statistics, the acreage of this fruit in the district has seen a sharp increase of 7% at 10,033 hectares for 2017-18 in Kutch, in comparison to about 6% rise in mango acreage in Gir Somnath district at 14, 820 hectares.
PM Vaghasiya, Director-Horticulture, Government of Gujarat told that more and more farmers are taking up mango cultivation by switching from conventional crops like castor.
The horticulture department provided a data wherein the mango production in Kutch has been promising. A huge jump of 91,206 tonnes in 2016-17 was seen from 85,240 tonnes of mango in 2015-16. Sadly, the output dipped to 72,739 tonnes in 2017-18.
One of the mango producers, Mr. Jadeja from Kutch said that they foresee better crop production this year despite of water shortage in other parts of Kutch. Provision of adequate water due to drip irrigation would be a solution to the same. Not only this, as soon as canal network will get completed, it would help in further boosting the prospects of Kutch becoming a Kesar land.
He further believes in the fact that the central part of the Kutch region which is highly fertile with limited exposure to agro chemicals could be a good opportunity for Kesar mango cultivation. Presently, Mandvi, Mundra and Nakhatrana in Gujarat are some of the preferred talukas where mango cultivation is being taken up.
As per government officials, the support from state in the form of infrastructure development and market support for exports and subsidy for seeds and cultivation have attracted many farmers in Kutch to take up mango as a key crop.
Seems like Gir Somnath is now facing a climatic outrage which is feared to curb mango output by almost 50% in comparison to previous year. Increased moisture in the atmosphere and prolonged cold climate has spoiled the flowering on mango trees.
It is expected that due to this climate outrage crop would be less, and the output would be half of what it used to be in the normal season. The rates of mangoes would certainly be higher with limited stocks in hand.
Image Credit: Walk Through India
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