Oil Palm Developers and Processors Association (OPDPA) has welcomed the Union government’s vision on the need of being self-reliant in edible oil according to the Atmanirbhar Bharat scheme.
“Prime Minister Narendra Modi has recently recommended the state governments of Northeast region to set up oil palm missions in their respective states to promote cultivation of the oil palm. The setting up of these missions will help boost the ecosystem as well increase focus for the adoption of the crop. Oil palm cultivation in Northeast can tremendously boost the economy of the region leading to large scale development and progress of the region,” a statement from OPDPA said.
Commenting on the progressive step taken by the government, Sanjay Goenka, president at OPDPA said: “The expanse of oil palm cultivation in the country is very negligible today as compared to the potential the crop possesses. We have seen the transformation this crop has brought about in the lives of farmer community in Andhra Pradesh and we hope to emulate the same in the Northeast states as well. A strong and robust long-term policy mechanism needs to be introduced to give this crop the required push across India.”
In the Northeast, Arunachal Pradesh and Assam have tremendous scope for undertaking and increasing area under oil palm. The agro-climatic conditions of the region are extremely suitable for oil palm cultivation and therefore, the region has the potential to cover over 2,00,000 acres. Equivalent to 1 billion dollars of imports can be prevented, the association stated.
Members of OPDPA have already set up base and are working closely with the state governments of Northeast to create awareness on the benefits of the crop.