Plan to Set Up Hub in Jalna to Boost Seed Industry

To boost the seed industry in Jalna, the Maharashtra state government announced its decision to set up an Rs 110-crore seed hub project in the city. The announcement was made by the state water supply and sanitation minister, Babanrao Lonikar and four term MLA from the Partur assembly constituency in Jalna.

The initiative would place the rapidly flourishing industry on the global map, he said. The new facility would see active participation from farmers, companies engaged in seed manufacturing and the state government.

Through funds from the Union and state governments and through private investors as well, the required project cost will be raised. For the farmers the facility will ensure processing units, farm ponds, drip irrigation facilities, shade nets and other basic infrastructure.

The government will also provide modern facilities like state of the art laboratories and research facilities. For the seeds provisions to improve packaging and storage facilities will also be made in the proposed hub. India is the sixth largest producer of seeds in the world and each year records an average Rs 15,000 crore turnover.

The industry has great potential. Lonikar said, "Many nationally as well as internationally-renowned seed manufacturers are based in Jalna. Apart from this, a large number of farmers are also associated with the industry. They are doing quite well and are immensely contributing to the region's economy. Looking at the projects, the state now plans on developing various facilities to help the manufacturers and farmers."

Lonikar said that the Maharashtra state contributes around a 3rd third of the total turnover of the country in the sector, and Jalna has a major share in this. Also it witnesses an average annual turnover of around Rs 3,000 crore.

In seed production nearly there are over 20,000 farmers engaged and to produce high quality seeds nearly 10,000 farmers are already using shade nets.

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