Additional Secretary, Union Ministry of Agriculture, Cooperation and Farmers Welfare, Vivek Agarwal, concluded his five-day visit to Kashmir Valley with inspection of organic vegetable market Lalmandi, Srinagar.
Agarwal visited and inspected different organically grown vegetable and exotic vegetable markets set up by the Directorate of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare, Kashmir.
Speaking on the occasion, the Union Additional Secretary said that organic farming is being acknowledged as a viable crop production system that can sustain soil health, ecosystem and people by combining tradition, innovation and improved farm technology. He said this region having the best agro-climatic conditions for organic farming can also increase employment opportunities for farmers as well as educated unemployed youth. He added that the Union Ministry of Agriculture will provide all support and help to boost the organic sector in the valley.
Vivek Agarwal said these centres are providing better opportunities to sellers and consumers for bringing the right product at the right price.
Director, Agriculture, Chowdhary Mohammad Iqbal, briefed Additional Secretary about the need of setting up of these centres which is being acknowledged by all in the society, as they can purchase organic as well as exotic vegetables from here at a reasonable price.
While elaborating on the success rate of organic production in the valley, the Director said that organic vegetables are becoming an integral part of regular food consumption, for which the department is taking various initiatives, such as providing space to the growers is a hand holding initiative. He added that for the first time since the establishment of Organic Vegetable Market Lalmandi, black cumin (Kala Zeera), pulses and honey from Gurez Valley will be available for sale from today.
Later, the Additional Secretary flagged off two vegetable-laden refrigerated vans to different Mandis of the Valley from Lalmandi.MD, JKHPMC, Shafat Sultan, Joint Director Agriculture, Inputs, Farooq Ahmad Shah, Joint Director Extension, Mohammad Qasim Gani, Joint Director, Farms, Dr Syed Waseem Ahmad Shah, Chief Agriculture Officer, Srinagar, Mohammad Younis Chowdhary besides progressive farmers and growers were present on the occasion.