Chandigarh, Nov 5 (UNI) Cooperative Sugar Mills of Haryana, which will start their crushing operation from November 13, are expected to crush 360 lakh quintals of sugarcane during this season as compared to 340 lakh quintals crushed during 2006-07.
Haryana Agriculture Minister H S Chatha said with a view to improving cane availability, the cooperative sugarmills of the state had implemented an Intensive Cane Development Plan in their respective zones.
Main emphasis has been laid on propagation of improved varieties of cane, raising of foundation seed nurseries, heat treatment of cane seed and using tissue culture technique, biological control of sugarcane pest and ring pit method of cane planting.
He said in order to enhance income of the farmers from sugarcane based cropping system, efforts had been made to improve the cane productivity (per acre yield).
The yield of sugarcane had progressively increased from 220 quintal per acre in 2004-05 to 240 quintal per acre in 2005-06, 265 quintal per acre in 2006-07 and 280 quintal per acre in 2007-08.
For doubling the income of the sugarcane growers, inter cropping in between rows of sugarcane crop was also encouraged.
During 2007-08 crop season, about 47000 acres of area was covered under inter crops like wheat, mustard, garlic, onion and other vegetables in between rows of sugarcane.
The payment for cane was also made to the farmers in time for which financial assistance in terms of loan was also given by the government.
He said a Cane Development Plan involving Rs 24.64 crore for the next year 2008-09 had also been formulated. Out of this amount, Rs 3.84 crore would be spent as subsidy and Rs 20.80 crore would be disbursed in kind as interest free loan for arranging various inputs like seeds, fertilisers and pesticides for sugarcane crop.