DC Anantnag inaugurates first Honey processing and bottling plant at Achabal
ANANTNAG : The Deputy Commissioner (DC) Anantnag, Dr Piyush Singla Wednesday inaugurated the first Honey processing and bottling plant at Achabal, here.
DDC Member Achabal, Samina Hussain and Block Development Vice Chairperson were present on the occasion.
The processing and bottling plant, setup at a cost of Rs 11.57 lakhs is the first of its kind in the district and has a capacity to process 600 kgs of honey on a daily basis. The plant will provide services to farmers on no profit basis. There are 201 private bee keepers in Anantnag with an annual production of 380 MTs of raw honey. The plant will enable the farmers to sell their honey as a marketable product and augment their incomes.
Speaking on the occasion, Dr Singla said that Agriculture is the primary occupation of a significant proportion of the population and the agricultural sector is a major contributor to the economy. He said that technological innovations and use of mechanized machinery as well as better marketability and quality control of the final produce are the drivers of value addition in the sector.
He said that the bottling plant will enable the farmers to market their honey in the market and allow them to realize higher prices for the produce. He said the farmers can get their honey processed and bottled at nominal charges and directed the department to handhold the farmers so that they can achieve maximum benefit.
The DC emphasized that the panchayats in collaboration with line department should focus on their local strengths and aid modernization of agricultural and horticultural activities.
Referring to employability in todays’ times, the DC said that skill upgradation courses are necessary to make our youth job ready. He said that the District Skill Committee has recently started a bat crafting courses and similar courses will be started in other sectors to impart necessary skills to our youth to take up jobs in these sectors.
DDC Member Achabal said that the bottling plant will benefit various local farmers. She said that similar farmer friendly initiatives must be taken up in other areas also. She said honey has multiple uses and is an ingredient in various products and as such the plant will open many avenues for the farmers to market their products.
BDC Vice Chairperson Achabal thanked the District Administration for the initiative. He said that collaboration of PRIs and officials is critical to ground level penetration of welfare measures.
It is in place to mention that Agriculture department is already running two demonstrations cum training centres at Achabal and Mattan consisting of 125 bee colonies and produces around 5 quintals of raw honey annually.