The rise of the ‘wild’ Arunachal kiwi

#GS3 #ENVIRONMENT #AGRICULTURE

Arunachal Pradesh kiwis are the only kiwis in the country to have obtained an organic certification.

 

  • Twenty years ago, the kiwis that grew wild in Arunachal Pradesh’s Ziro Valley barely caught anyone’s attention. 
  • However, in the last decade, farmers slowly recognised the commercial value of the fruit. 
  • Today, the kiwis of the region are the only certified organic fruit of their kind in the country.

 

The certification, its advantages

  • The organic certification was provided by the Mission Organic Value Chain Development for North East Region (MOVCD-NER), a scheme for the northeastern states by the Ministry of Agriculture & Farmers’ Welfare under the Central government.
  • An agricultural practice/product is considered organic when there are no chemical fertilisers or pesticides involved in its cultivation process. 
  • Such certifications in India can be obtained after strict scientific assessment done by the regulatory body, Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority (APEDA).
  • Kiwis of Ziro Valley — located in Lower Subansiri district — were certified as organic following a standard three-year-process. 
  • For years, a fruit locally called ‘anteri’ would grow wild in the hills of Arunachal Pradesh. 
  • Kiwifruit a boon for Arunachal Pradesh - is a “deciduous fruiting vine native to Yangtze river valley of south and central China.
  • It is also called “China’s miracle fruit” and “Horticulture wonder of New Zealand”. 
  • Kiwifruit vine originated in China, but its full economic potential was exploited by the New Zealanders, which accounts for over 70 per cent of world trade.
  • In Arunachal Pradesh, a domesticated variety of kiwi was introduced as a commercial fruit only in 2000.
  • The state accounts for 50 per cent of the country’s kiwiproduction. 
  • The state wanted one signature crop to be brand, like Meghalaya is known for lakadong turmeric, Manipur is known for black rice, Arunachal Pradesh should be known for kiwi.
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