Agronomists are making the most of a new crop that has come to be known as the ‘organic crop’.
They say that it can be grown with minimal chemical inputs and is also less polluting.
Read: The future of agriculture is organic, says Gurdev Pancholy, chairman of the All India Organic Food Association, in a video uploaded on Youtube.
“Organic vegetable cultivation is a highly developed and versatile crop with a long history of cultivation,” Pancholly said.
It is grown in the state of Maharashtra with the help of agrochemicals, but its most popular varieties are the varieties known as organic varieties, which use a mixture of organic and conventional methods.
A typical organic vegetable has a high yield of about 1kg per hectare and a higher yield of the organic variety.
Its seeds can be stored for a year, and the crop is also resistant to certain diseases and pests.
Organic vegetables are usually grown on the banks of the River Yamuna in Maharashtra, which is a water body that runs through the state and is home to an estimated 500 million people.
The organic variety that is popular in Maharashtra has a shorter growing season and a shorter season than the conventional variety, Panchody said.
“The crop can be planted in a short period of time.
It can be easily propagated and its seed can be harvested by hand,” Pacholy said.
Organic vegetable growers have a long tradition of growing organic vegetables in Maharashtra.
“They are one of the biggest suppliers of organic vegetable seed,” he said.
The agrochemical industry has been growing at an average of 10% annually in the last decade, but that figure is expected to rise to about 20% by 2021, Pachody said, adding that the sector is also witnessing an increase in organic vegetable exports.
Pancholy said the demand for organic vegetables is increasing because of the ease of use and low cost of cultivation.
“The organic varieties are more affordable, so they are being grown more and more,” he added.
Pachody, who is also a director of a cooperative of organic growers in the city of Thane, said the state government was trying to ensure that the state’s organic vegetable industry can flourish.
“If they want to grow a lot of organic varieties then Maharashtra is a good place to do it,” he claimed.
“Maharashtra is a land of opportunity,” he concluded.