CIMAP develops aromatic cluster in UP district

Lucknow, May 19 The CSIR-Central Institute Medicinal and Aromatic Plants (CIMAP) has launched Uttar Pradesh’s first ‘Sustainable Aroma Cluster’ in the Bhagauli locality of Barabanki, demonstrating to farmers how modern technology can be used for sustainable agriculture practices that do not harm the ecosystem.

The sustainable aroma cluster has been developed on the land of 30 farmers by cultivating aromatic plants in an eco-friendly manner.

The cluster will set an example on the use of sustainable practices in agriculture and help the country attain zero-carbon emission goals.

CIMAP has planted a high-yielding mint variety (CIM-Unnati) in the cluster which is resistant to biotic stress, including plant pests and diseases and tolerant to abiotic stresses, including drought, untimely rain, salinity, heat, cold and heavy metals.

The cluster will serve as a model for farmers to replicate across the state.

The cluster developed by CIMAP aims at zero-carbon emission by adopting sustainable practices in agriculture.

Similar clusters will be established in other parts of the state to save the environment and reduce health risks.

CIMAP scientists demonstrated before farmers how drones are used to irrigate fields and for sprinkling of pesticides in a precise and efficient manner. They were shown how manual irrigation leads to wastage of water and manual pesticide sprinkling harms people involved in it as well as the environment.

Farmers also got tips on soil testing. Solar-powered units to extract mint oil were also inaugurated.

CIMAP director Prabodh K. Trivedi said the institute has used an improved agri technique called Early Mint Technology in the development of the cluster.

“The technology saves 20-25 per cent of irrigation water and reduces weed infestations. Besides, it helps in early maturity of crops,” he said.

Farmers use new technologies, farm mechanisation and chemicals for getting maximum crop yield to meet the ever-increasing demand. It could be helpful in reducing food prices, but may lead to a progressive decrease in soil fertility, topsoil depletion, contamination of groundwater, air pollution, greenhouse gas emissions, and newer threats to human health, he added.

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