Northeast Indias first ex-situ orchid conservatory has been established at Kimin in Arunachal Pradeshs Papum Pare district with financial support from the Department of Biotechnology (DBT) under the Union Ministry of Science and Technology.
The 600 sq mt orchid conservatory houses about 600 varieties of orchids. Ex-situ conservation involves maintenance and breeding of endangered plants and animals under partially or wholly controlled conditions in specific areas. It means conservation of selected plants and animals in selected areas outside their natural habitat.
Arunachal Chief Minister Pema Khandu inaugurated the state-of-the-art conservatory at the centre of excellence for bioresources and sustainable development at Kimin on Thursday.
Appreciating the scientists at the centre for their efforts to turn the almost barren complex into a vibrant and green centre, Khandu said with the new Orchidarium, the centre is working towards conservation and propagation of highly-valued orchid species besides developing orchid-based entrepreneurship.
Khandu lauded the centre’s efforts in constantly working for conservation and multiplication of priority orchid species along with its satellite units in villages with a view to promote orchid-based entrepreneurship in the rural areas of Arunachal Pradesh.
“With such a world-class facility at our disposal, our focus should now be on the potential of a revenue-generating model of orchids for the national and international audience. We should emphasise more on scientific research activities to take our state on the path of self-sustainability,” Khandu said.
While encouraging the scientists to evolve a business model for its resources so that individual farmers benefit from it, Khandu assured that the state government would soon take over the centre of excellence for its sustenance as it was set up with the support of the Central government on project mode for three years, which will come to an end shortly.
The primary aspect of an orchidarium is to conserve as well as propagate economically important varieties of orchids and thus providing economical avenues to the local populace of the state for developing orchid-based entrepreneurial ventures.
The centre has also established orchid production units each measuring 80 sq mt in Kimin, Ziro, Deed, Pasighat and Namsai, each with 350 commercial orchids and planting materials and equipment.