Agri Business

‘Raise domestic natural rubber output to curb imports’

V.Sajeev Kumar Kochi | Updated on October 25, 2021

FILE PHOTO: Rubber sap trickles on to the cup at a rubber plantation during the early hours work in Satcherri area, 60 km north of Agartala   -  PTI

Indian Rubber Board Executive Director asks growers to adopt long-, short-term strategies immediately

The gap between natural rubber production and consumption has to be bridged to avoid large-scale imports, Indian Rubber Board Executive Director KN Raghavan has said.

Currently, India’s rubber production is lower than consumption. During the current fiscal, the Rubber Board has estimated production to be 7.9 lakh tonnes and consumption 11.9 lakh tonnes – a supply deficit of four lakh tonnes.

According to Raghavan, the tyre and non-tyre sectors are showing relatively significant growth rates. An increase in rubber consumption in the coming days may lead to large scale imports. Therefore, growers should take immediate care in implementing long-term and short-term strategies proposed by the Board to increase rubber production.

Atmanirbhar Bharat

He was inaugurating the Rubber Board campaign on ‘Resurgence in rubber for Atmanirbhar Bharat’ to increase production and productivity of rubber holdings.

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The Rubber Board chief called upon growers to raise production and productivity in their holdings to make India self-sufficient in rubber for domestic requirements. The meetings and training programmes as part Atmanirbhar Bharat campaign will be continued up to March 2022. Meetings are arranged in the traditional rubber areas and the North Eastern regions.

The Board is expected to contact 50,000 farmers through 2,500 meetings arranged across the country during this period through physical/ online meetings in strict compliance with the Covid protocol. It also proposed many strategies for production and productivity enhancement.

Long-term plans

New planting and replanting for extension of rubber cultivation, replanting of old and senile plantations with high yielding clones, planting of suitable clones in the available areas of North Eastern regions etc. are the long-term plans to increase natural rubber production in the country.

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A Credit Linked Rubber Plantation Development Plan (CLRDP) supported by Automotive Manufacturers Association (ATMA) and NABARD has already been started to increase rubber production in the coming years.

The short-term strategies such as adoption of good agricultural practices; promotion of rain-guarding, disease management, Controlled Upward Tapping (CUT), adoption of rubber plantations etc. are the other important topics of the campaign. The meetings will also discuss how to enable the growers to meet the various challenges in the rubber sector.

Published on October 25, 2021

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