Agriculture in Tamil Nadu
 

Tamilnadu Agriculture

PalayamkottaiFields.jpg Agriculture continues to be the most predominant sector of the State economy, as 70% of the population is engaged in Agriculture and allied activities for their livelihood. The State has as an area of 1.3 Lakh sq.km with a gross cropped area of around 63 L.Ha.. The Government's policy and objectives have been to ensure stability in agricultural production and to increase the agricultural production in a sustainable manner to meet the food requirement of growing population and also to meet the raw material needs of agro based industries, thereby providing employment opportunities to the rural population. Tamil Nadu has all along been one of the states with a creditable performance in agricultural production with the farmers relatively more responsive and receptive to changing technologies and market forces.

The Agriculture Department has taken up the challenge to achieve higher growth rate in agriculture by implementing several development schemes and also propagation of relevant technologies to step up the production. Intensive Integrated farming system, massive Wasteland Development Programme, comprehensive watershed development activities, water management through Micro irrigation systems, Organic farming, Soil health improvement through Bio-fertiliser including Green Manuring, adoption of Integrated Nutrient Management (INM) and Integrated Pest Management (IPM) technologies are given priority through various programmes, besides crop diversification to fetch better return and value addition to agricultural produce are also given priority to improve the economic status of the farming community.

Important crops

Nagercoil_paddy_fields.jpg The principal food crops are rice, maize, jowar (cholam), bajra (cumbu), ragi, and pulses (Bengalgram, Redgram, Greengram Blackgram and Horsegram). The cash crops include cotton, sugarcane, oilseeds, coffee, tea, rubber, coconut, gingelly and chillies. The important horticultural products are bananas and mangoes.The state is the largest producer of bananas, flowers, tapioca, the second largest producer of mangoes,natural rubber, coconut, groundnut and the third largest producer of coffee, sapota ,tea and sugarcane .Tamil Nadu's sugarcane yield per hectare is the highest in India. The state has 17,000 hectares of land under oil palm cultivation, the second highest in India. Paddy is grown in large excess because rice is the main staple food of the state. There are three crops based on duration. The first one is the ‘Kuruvai’ (the short term crop) with duration of three and a half to four months from June to July to Oct - Nov. The second crop is called the ‘Thaladi’ that grown in 5 to 6 months Oct - Nov to Feb - March. Third is 'Samba' and has a duration of almost 6 months from Aug to January.

Horticulture

Banana_Tree Tamil Nadu with Seven agro-climatic conditions and varied soil types is better placed for production of Fruits, Vegetables, Spices, Plantation crops, Flowers, Medicinal and Aromatic plants. Horticulture is the fastest growing sector within agriculture in Tamil Nadu. About 10.96 lakh ha. is covered under various horticultural crops. The total production of horticultural crops is 192.28 lakh MT. In terms of production, Tamil Nadu accounts for 10% in fruits and 6% in vegetables, in India . Horticulture is an important segment of Agriculture sector which contributes about one - fifth share in the economy of Agriculture and allied sectors. Mango and Banana are the leading fruit crops in Tamil Nadu accounting for over 87% of the total fruit production. The main vegetables grown are Tapioca, Tomato, Onion, Brinjal and Drumstick. Tamil Nadu is also a leading state in the production of flowers with the total production of horticultural crops standing at Indian Rupee symbol.svg 99.47 Lakhs during 2003-04. The main flowers grown in Tamil Nadu are Jasmine, Mullai, Chrysanthemum, Marigold and Rose.

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