To give more meaning to its commitment towards promoting oil palm cultivation in the state, the Telangana Government has notified an additional potential area of 3.29 lakh hectares i.e. 8.14 lakh acres in 25 districts of Telangana apart from the already allocated farming area.
Earlier the government has notified almost 3,29,665 hectares of land in 25 districts in the state. However, it has identified additional potential areas of 3.29 lakh hectares (8.14 lakh acres) to promote palm oil cultivation as a better alternative to paddy farming.
“Out of 25 districts being identified to promote oil palm cultivation, a total of four districts such as Khammam, Kothagudem, Nalgonda and Suryapet has prepared the fields for oil pal cultivate where an area of 19,520 hackers i.e. 48,806 acres of land is covered so far.
This has amplified with two processing units with a capacity of 30 tonnes per hour each at Ashwaraopet and Apparaopet village in Dammapet Mandal of Bhadradri Kothagudem District,” informed Director of Horticultulture and Sericulture L.Venkatram Reddy.
Explaining that Telangana state stands 6th in the field of Oil Palm cultivation in the country – second in production of Fresh Fruit Bunches (FFB) and first in Oil Extraction Rate (OER) with 18.68 percent, he said, “Presently the state production of crude palm oil is only around 38,000 MT against the requirement of 3.66 lakh MT. To meet the gap an area of 2.5 lakh acres needs to be brought under Oil palm cultivation.”
Elucidating the advantage of oil palm cultivation, he said, “It provides sustainable and remunerative income for as long as 25-30 years with the highest yield per unit area compared to the other oilseed crops. It also carried fewer incidences of pests and diseases coupled with low input cost. More importantly, this crop is covered by buy-back arrangement provision under Oil palm Act, 1993.” The farmers can realize an amount of Rs.1,20,000/- to Rs.1,50,000/- per acre with an average FFB (Fresh Fruit Bunches) price of Rs.10,000/- per ton.
Summoning up the farmers to take up oil palm cultivation, the Director of Horticulture and Sericulture L.Venkatram Reddy said, “Government is providing assistance for taking up Oilpalm Cultivation under Centrally Sponsored Scheme National Food Security Mission – Oilpalm with the ration of 60:40 between the center and the State. Under this scheme, 50% of assistance is provided on plant material, cultivation assistance, etc.”