Orissa to supply certified seeds to farmers

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Bhubaneswar,June 19 (UNI) The Orissa government has planned to supply three lakh quintals of certified paddy seeds to the farmers for the Khariff crop 2008-09.

Agriculture Minister Surendranath Naik told media persons here that so far the government had already supplied 2,24,504 quintals of certified seeds to the farmers and hoped to achieve the target soon.

Mr Naik said this year there was good demand for the certified seeds as seeds were being supplied by the government at a subsidised rate of Rs 8 per kg against the procurement price of Rs.14 per kg.

The Minister said he had already written a letter to the Union government to include supply of certified seeds at a subsidised rate under the Food Security mission and reimburse the subsidy amount.

The Minister said the state required 24 lakh quintals of seeds per year.In 2006-07 the seed replacement rate was 6.7 per cent but the government targeted to make it 18 per cent next year.

Mr Nayak said the union government has been approached to set up 12 new rake points in different parts of the state for easy availability of fertilisers to the farmers.The Centre had already approved to set up eight new rake points.

He said the use of fertiliser had increased among the farmers in the state from 47 kg per hectare in 2006 to 53.2 kg last year.

The Minister said in spite of aberrant agro-climatic situation the food grain production reached a new high of 91.90 lakh tonne, a record over past 60 years.

He said the government targetted to cultivate food grains on 4861,000 hectares of land to produce 8929,000 tonnes.

The Minister said the torrential rains that lashed the state for the last three days had affected the agricultural activities in coastal orissa.

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