After the success of trials undertaken with the assistance of Jammu and Kashmir administration, Sikkim is all set to start saffron cultivation this year and farmers are gearing up for it.
Sikkim University, Sikkim government Horticulture Department and Agriculture Department of Jammu and Kashmir have joined hands to monitor saffron cultivation in the state.
The trial phase was undertaken under the supervision of Sikkim University, which has given enthusiastic results. Sikkim government has done trial of saffron cultivation in various pockets of Sikkim like Yaksum and nearby areas in West Sikkim and Pangthang, Simik, Khamdong, Padamchen and surrounding areas in East Sikkim has been identified for further cultivation.
A high-level delegation from Sikkim also visited Jammu and Kashmir for an agreement and tie-up last July and then onwards all department officials are in touch to ensure production.
Jammu and Kashmir Agriculture Department and Horticulture Department of Sikkim have ensured a basic training programme for farmers to know about yield and farming.
Officials said Kashmir's Pampore and Sikkim's Yangyang have the same weather and geographical conditions, which ensured good success rate during trials.
Earlier, the Sikkim government has cultivated saffron on around one and a half acres of farming land in different locations to see results, which has fantastic results, Sikkim Governor Ganga Prasad told ANI.
"Mission started in 2020 with a small piece of land under the monitoring of Sikkim University. After successful results, cultivation attempt made in a different part of State, which was also very successful," said the Governor.
Governor Prasad also said that the success rate of saffron cultivation is around 80 per cent, which is good.
"Sikkim has very supportive weather for saffron cultivation and it has all required," he said.
He further said that they held several meetings with Chief Minister Prem Singh Tamang and other officials in Raj Bhawan for discussion and expansion of saffron cultivation.
Sikkim government is looking at it as a major move to boost the growth and benefit farmers. Jammu and Kashmir has a specialty in saffron cultivation.
(with inputs from ANI)