CSIR and CMERI set up ‘centre for post harvest processing and research’ in capital to augment rural economy.
The Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR)-Central Mechanical Engineering Research Institute (CMERI) of Durgapur, West Bengal has set up a ‘Centre for Post-Harvest Processing and Research’ in the state capital to help augment the rural economy in Arunachal Pradesh.
“The Centre for Post-Harvest Processing will immensely benefit our rural tribal people as it will provide technical know-how to them through training,” stated Agriculture and Horticulture Minister Tage Taki while launching the centre at the Naharlagun campus of CSIR- North East Institute of Science and Technology (NEIST) here today.
“Arunachal produces good quality of ginger, turmeric, chilly and other spices crops but due to lack of preservation and post-harvest processing technology, farmers are forced to sell their produces at a low price.
The centre will now immensely benefit our farmers as it will provide them technical know-how on how to preserve their produces using post-harvest technology,” Taki told the reporters.
To a question, the Minister said that his department is contemplating to go for post-harvest processing of winter vegetables so that it could be preserved for long.
“We are working in line with Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s vision to double the farmers’ income by the year 2022. To attain that goal, we must explore for quality marketable produces instead of quantity for which post-harvest technology is very much important,” he said.
CSIR-CMERI Director Dr Haris Hirani said, “To enhance income of the farmers, CSIR-CMERI has developed post-harvest technologies to providing proper technological solutions for washing, slicing, drying of spices like ginger and turmeric for commercial purpose.
This Centre will provide training to improve the knowledge and skill of farmers and entrepreneurs of Arunachal Pradesh through post-harvest handling, processing, water purification and renewable energy technologies,” he said.
The centre would help the farmers of the state to fetch higher market prices for their produces and enhance their economic conditions. The cost of the post-harvesting unit is around Rs 10.5 lakh, he informed.
He added, any prospective entrepreneur can develop such machine by undergoing training here or he/she can come to us (at CSIR-CMERI, Durgapur) for skill training or technology transfer. “Entrepreneurs are most welcome to this lab as well as in Durgapur where I have the main laboratory.”
The director also said that similar post-harvest processing unit was opened at Pasighat in East Siang district and another unit along with waste management technology is being set up at Ziro in Lower Subansiri district, while adding that a ‘zero-waste colony’ is being developed at Ziro.
Coinciding with the inaugural programme, a skill development programme on post-harvest processing of ginger & turmeric; renewable energy augmented with solar tree; and water treatment engineering & management also commenced at the premises of CSIR- NEIST Branch Itanagar. Also present on the occasion were Doimukh MLA Tana Hali Tara, CSIR-NEIST (Jorhat) Director Dr G Narahari Sastry and other scientists.