Friday, July 12, 2024

Kerala seeks IIM-K help to give fillip to plantation sector

The Department of Industries and Commerce (DIC) on Thursday signed an MoU with the Indian Institute of Management Kozhikode (IIM-K) for the conduct of a comprehensive study on diversification and optimisation of revenue from plantations in Kerala as part of various plans envisaged in the wake of formation of the Plantation Directorate under the DIC.

The MoU in this regard was inked in the presence of Minister for Law, Industries and Coir P. Rajeeve by Plantations Special Officer and Director, DIC, S Harikishore and IIMK Mentor Professor Anandakuttan, here on Thursday.

The Minister said the agreement with IIM-K was part of a set of upfront initiatives underway to enhance revenue from plantations and build ‘Kerala Plantation’ as a global brand for marketing and for value-addition of a wide range of plantation crops.

He further pointed out that the government was also looking into the possibility of raising the land ceiling on plantations when they are used for taking up activities on industrial lines by following due legal procedures to enhance revenue from them.

Other initiatives underway include promotion of cultivation of commercially-viable fruits and supplementary crops, value-addition of produce, introduction of new technology and machinery and leveraging plantations for a range of farm-related activities based on due procedures.

IIM-K Director Prof Debashis Chatterjee said IIM-K’s approach will be based on authentic research, sustainable systems and comprehensive revamp in the diversification of plantation sector, which is critical in the state’s economy and commerce.

Earlier, the government had sanctioned funds for conduct of a comprehensive study on the diversification and revamp of the plantation sector by taking on board a competent agency.

Following this, tenders were invited and an expert technical committee appointed by the government selected IIM-K after evaluating its bid. –IANS

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