Kothagudem: The State government has been making efforts towards cultivation of oil palm in about one lakh acres in Telangana, stated Transport Minister P Ajay Kumar.
He visited the palm oil factory at Apparaopet in Aswaraopet mandal in the district on Saturday. He inspected the factory premises, interacted with the officials and later addressed the local farmers at a meeting at the village.
Ajay Kumar said the government was taking all steps to ensure profitability of oil palm cultivation. To promote the cultivation the government was providing subsidies on the procurement of seeds, drip system and fertilisers.
He appealed to the farmers to make use of such facilities, take up oil palm cultivation and to earn profits. With the support extended to the palm oil industry by the Chief Minister K Chandrashekhar Rao the extent of land cultivated and the factories have been expanded in Aswaraopet and Dammapet mandals in recent times, he said.
At present, oil palm was being cultivated in 33, 812 acres in Kothagudem district and 6845 acres in Khammam district while the crop was being cultivated in about 40, 872 acres across the state, Ajay Kumar noted.
There was good demand for cooking oil in the country which was facing shortage for the oil and oil products. The country needs 21 metric tonnes of oil while the production was only 7 lakh metric tonnes. About 15 metric tonnes of oil was being imported from abroad.
Hence the farmers have to come forward to capitalise the opportunity by cultivating oil palm. The State government would extend all possible support through the Telangana State Cooperative Oilseeds Growers’ Federation Limited, which would look after marketing of the products and related matters, Ajay Kumar said.
MLC B Lakhmi Narayana, MLA M Nageswar Rao, ex-MLA T Venkateswarlu, the Oil Fed Chairman K Ramakrishna Reddy, its MD Nirmala, Horticulture Officer J Mariyanna and others were present.
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