Department of Agriculture today introduced portable solar dryers for farmers in Ramban district for drying various agricultural products. The Director of Agriculture, Dr. Ashvani Kumar Sharma, distributed the solar dryers to 26 farmers with a 90% subsidy provided under the Capex budget.
District Agriculture Officer, Dr. Ramesh Pandoh, Sub Division Agriculture Officer, Sudhir Manhas and Agriculture Extension Officer, Ramban, Jagdish Bali were also present on the occasion.
CAO informed that these solar dryers actually costing Rs.14000 in the market, were given to the farmer for only Rs 14.00/- on 90% subsidy and each of these solar dryers can dry any any vegetable, fruit or spice under sunlight unaffected by rain and dust without discoloring the dried product.
Products dried in this way will increase the market value of agricultural products, thus multiplying farmers’ income. “In Ramban district, these dryers will mainly be used to dry Anardana and Quince (Beyi) by farmers on a commercial scale,” says Dr Ashvani.
It is pertinent to mention here that Ramban district is the biggest producer of Anardana in J&K. To start with, small portable dryers with a capacity of only 3-5 kg have been distributed and if successful larger dryers will also be provided to large-scale farmers, he added.
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