By TC News Desk
Agartala, August 11: In a bid to harness the nutritional potential of mushrooms and boost local economies, the state of Tripura has unveiled plans to establish mushroom processing centers. This ambitious initiative was announced by Agriculture and Farmers Welfare Minister Ratanlal Nath during the inauguration of a one-day training camp focused on commercial mushroom cultivation. The event, hosted at the Horticulture and Land Conservation Department’s research center in Nagichra, saw the participation of 60 enthusiastic mushroom growers.
Minister Nath underscored the government’s commitment to employing scientific methods for mushroom cultivation within the state. Tripura, home to 660 mushroom growers, has witnessed an impressive 62% surge in mushroom seed or spawn production over the last 5 to 7 years. Notably, the establishment of 10 new laboratories since 2018 has further bolstered mushroom seed production.
Several success stories emerged from the event, highlighting the transformative impact of mushroom cultivation on local livelihoods. Entrepreneurs like Babul Debnath of Phatikchara, Mrigank Das of Kailasahar, and Liton Biswas of Dukli have collectively generated employment opportunities for 12 to 15 individuals through their mushroom production centers.
Food minister Sushanta Chowdhury, graced the occasion as a special guest and championed the profitability of mushroom cultivation. He urged farmers to embrace this burgeoning sector, emphasizing Tripura’s distinguished role in Indian agriculture. The state’s remarkable progress in farm mechanization has contributed to a remarkable uptick in mushroom seed production.
The event also witnessed the presence of Janjati Welfare Minister Bikash Debbarma, who hailed the transformational journey of Janjati mushroom farmers. Traditionally reliant on conventional methods, these farmers have harnessed scientific techniques following essential training over the past 5 years. As a result, the Janjati community has reaped financial rewards from their newfound approach to mushroom cultivation.
The training camp’s opening ceremony featured a welcome speech by the Director of Horticulture and Land Conservation Department, Dr Phani Bhushan Jamatia. Dr Rajib Ghosh, Deputy Director of the department, and Somen Kumar Das, Assistant Director, imparted valuable insights to eager participants, equipping them with the knowledge needed for successful mushroom cultivation. As Tripura’s mushroom industry gains momentum, its impact on both nutrition and livelihoods is expected to flourish.