INDIA - In order to become self-sufficient in poultry products, the Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir is eyeing to set up poultry feed plant in the state.
Sajad Gani Lone, the state minister for animals, sheep husbandry and fisheries in Jammu and Kashmir, said that he has directed his officers to formulate a plan for establishment of feed farm for the convenience of poultry rearers.
Stressing that the new feed plant will bring a revolution in the sector, the minister said there is a need for augmenting the existing poultry industry so that landless and marginal farmers can make their living out of poultry rearing.
Lone said that the new feed plant will have a state of the art manufacturing facility, embedded with the latest technology, and directed officials to send the proposal of setting up feed plant to the ministry soon.
The minister did not reveal about the capacity of the plant and where it will be located, but added that it will be established in Kashmir valley.
Funding for the plant will be looked into once the proposal is received, and proper agencies can be approached. The minister did not reveal whether they are opting for other funding or whether the state will fund the feed plant, Mr Lone said.
However, sources in the animal husbandry department said that the funding will be from the central government under the agricultural promotion schemes.
The new feed plant would ease the provision of feed to the poultry industry, besides, providing job opportunities to youth, the minister added.
The minister also said that currently, the state imports $16 million (Rs 100 crore) worth of poultry products from other states, which includes 10 million stable birds worth $10 million (Rs 66 crore) and 35 million one-day chicks worth $6 million.
Chairing a meeting of senior officers of the poultry wing of his department, Mr Lone that poultry birds are being reared in large numbers in Pulwama, Budgam and Srinagar districts, which cater to the need of people to some extent.
Mr Lone asked poultry department officials to redouble their efforts to make the state self-sufficient in poultry production.
The minister also said that the concerned authorities should launch a campaign for educating the farmers about various schemes under implementation in the department, and emphasised that the government is every year spending a large amount on importing feed for day-old chicks and birds.
Director Animal Husbandry, Kashmir, Dr Shamas-u-din Makhdoomi, and senior officers of the Poultry Wing among other officials also attended the meeting.
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