West Bengal govt to create brand potatoes
Kolkata, Feb 18: The humble potato is all set for an imagemake-over as West Bengal is planning to brand its homegrown varietiesto boost domestic market sales and exports.
The state government has recently formed a Potato Development Committee and zeroed in on creating a Bengal brand.
The state government has recorded more than 15 per cent growth inpotato cultivation in the last four years and production has reached 76lakh tonne during 2006-07.
''We want to utilise this opportunity and increase exports. Stateagriculture, horticulture, agri-marketing and food processingdepartments must come together and work closely to create a brand,''state Food Processing Minister Mohanta Chatterjee stressed.
While West Bengal's domestic consumption is 45 lakh tonne, thebalance 31-lakh tonne is sold to Asom, Orissa, North-Eastern states,Andhra Pradesh and parts of Bihar and Jharkhand.
''A part of the total production needs to be processed, value added and sold in other states,'' Mr Chatterjee said.
West Bengal is already exporting Chipsona varieties of potatoes to Singapore, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and Malayasia.
''A part of the total production needs to be processed, value added and sold in other states,'' Mr Chatterjee added.