State inks MoU for potato seed production

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Bhubaneswar, April 21: Odisha government has signed an agreement with Utkal Tubers India Private Ltd for boosting potato seed production in the State.

As per the MoU, Government will lease out 10 acres of land at Deras farm, Khurda for establishment of Tissue Culture Laboratory and 40 acres of land at Similiguda, Koraput for seed multiplication with usual Government rent for a period of 15 years, extendable by 10 years with due approval of the Govt.

Utkal Tubers India Private Ltd will establish the required infrastructure and seed multiplication at their own cost to produce about 1.10 lakh MT potato seeds by the year 2020-21.

This will ensure supply of potato seeds to the farmers of Odisha at reasonable price and help in area expansion and production of potato in the State.

According to officials, potato seed is one of the major constraint for potato production in the state. Task Force report on Potato estimated requirement of 1.20 lakh MT of potato seeds by 2017-18, they said.

At present, potato seeds are being produced in a limited quantity in State and there is a huge gap between supply and demand. To meet the demand, large quantities of potato seeds are being procured from Punjab, Uttarakhand and Uttar Pradesh, every year by the farmers of the State and Directorate of Horticulture.

The Bengaluru based firm has proposed to produce potato seeds in the state by establishing tissue culture laboratory for production of disease free planting materials and multiplication inside the state.

The potato seeds produced will be marketed inside State and in Eastern India.

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