India targets 10 lakh acres of palm oil cultivation

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Vijayawada, July 1 (UNI) Union Minister of state for Commerce and Power Jairam Ramesh today said the country was targetting palm oil cultivation in ten lakh acres by 2014.

Speaking at a function at Nuzvid, 45 kms from here after inaugurating a 'Vapour Heat Treatment Plant constructed at a cost of Rs 13 crore, Mr Ramesh said India was importing 35 lakh tonnes of palm oil every year from Malyasia and Indonesia by spending Rs 10,000 crore.

To avoid this, the centre had decided to encourage the palm oil production in the country and in this direction Andhra Pradesh had already started cultivating palm oil in 1.5 lakh acres, he said.

Mr Ramesh said the new plant set up in Nuzvid was designed to clean, sort and grade fruits and vegetables upto 25 m tonnes per day with automated systems.

An irradiation plant, the second in the country after Maharashtra, would soon be set up in Hyderabad at a cost of Rs 10 crore, he said.

UNI CS VV AK1930

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