Project CHAMAN - Important Features & Importance of Horticulture

Project CHAMAN was launched with the aim of helping the horticulture segment of Indian agriculture. This project aims to make use of the Geo-informatics to help the farmers and policymakers in the Government. Learn more about the horticulture segment and the salient features of Project CHAMAN.

Aspirants would find this article very helpful while preparing for the IAS Exam.

Project CHAMAN – To Assist Horticulture in India

  1. India is the second-largest producer of fruits and vegetables in the world. It is a top producer of crops like lemons, mangoes and bananas.
  2. 30% of India’s agricultural Gross Domestic Product (GDP) is from horticulture, from 8.5% of the total cropped area.
  3. For the fifth time in a row, horticulture crops have taken over the production of food grains. Horticulture crops are comparatively unaffected by the vagaries of the monsoon as they are grown with assured irrigation, unlike food grains.
  4. The horticulture farmers need better access to storage facilities like cold storage and warehouses, markets, credit to help them better manage price risks and avoid distress.
  5. With the aim of developing India’s horticulture sector and helping the states identify suitable areas and crop types, the Ministry of Agriculture has been working on project Coordinated Horticulture Assessment and Management using geo-informatics (CHAMAN), which makes use of remote sensing technology and satellites for generating action plans for horticultural development.
  6. It was launched in 2014 under the Mission of Integrated Horticultural Development – MIDH. CHAMAN is being implemented by the Delhi-based Mahalanobis National Crop Forecast Centre (MNCFC).
What is Horticulture?

  • Horticulture is the branch of agriculture concerned with intensively cultured plants directly used by man for food, medicinal purposes, and aesthetic gratification.
  • In simpler words, it is the cultivation, production, and sale of vegetables, fruits, flowers, herbs, ornamental or exotic plants.
  • The term Horticulture is derived from the Latin words hortus (garden) and cultūra (cultivation).
  • L.H. Bailey is considered the Father of American Horticulture and M.H. Marigowda is considered the Father of Indian Horticulture.

Project Chaman – Important Features

  1. CHAMAN carries out mapping of area and output of 7 horticultural crops in 12 states.
  2. The Geo-Spatial Studies would be conducted in all major states of the country and remote sensing technology would be extended to other horticulture crops in future, giving a boost to horticulture in India.
  3. It can help horticulture sector provide nutrient-rich crops to the people and thus ensuring food and nutritional security to all people.
  4. It creates a digital inventory of all horticultural zones in the country.
  5. It can help in identifying areas of high Post-harvest losses which can be reduced by the creation of desired Post Harvest Infrastructures like cold storages. It will help in deciding the cold storage hubs.
  6. It will help manage inflation by providing accurate data on food stocks.

Achievements of Project Chaman

  • In the last few decades, this sector has gained prominence over contributing a growing share in Gross Value Addition of the Agriculture and allied sectors. The production of fruits and vegetables has overcome the production of food grains in the country.
  • India is the second largest producer of fruits and vegetables in the world with first rank in the production of Banana, Mango, Lime & Lemon, Papaya and Okra.
  • Mission for Integrated Development of Horticulture (MIDH) is being implemented by adopting an end-to-end approach for increasing the production of horticulture crops and reducing post-harvest losses.
  • The total horticulture production has increased from 211.2 million tonnes in 2007-08 to 311.71 million tonnes in 2018-19.
  • Farm mechanization to increase harvesting and processing efficiency and to reduce crop loss has been implemented by developing horticulturalists.
  • The varieties tolerant/resistant to various biotic and abiotic stresses have been developed in different fruits, vegetables, medicinal and aromatic plants.
  • Improved techniques for the production of disease-free quality planting materials have been developed.
  • Technology for enhancing water and nutrient efficiency through micro-irrigation and fertigation has been developed for a number of horticultural crops.
  • Micropropagation techniques have been standardized for various fruits, spices, and other vegetatively propagated plants.
  • Good Agricultural Practices (GAP) are developed for various plants, especially medicinal.
  • A low-cost environment-friendly cool chamber was developed for on-farm storage of fruits and vegetables.
    For the dissemination of technologies, region and crop-specific training and demonstration programs are being taken up.

Aspirants can check the following links relevant for comprehensive preparation of upcoming UPSC exams-

Project Chaman Phase – II

Based on the success of the CHAMAN-Phase-I, DAC&FW has approved the Phase-II of CHAMAN project for the period 2018-19 & 2019-20. The major goals of the CHAMAN Phase-II are operationalization of the technologies developed during Phase-I, taking up new crops and research & development studies, especially crop yield modeling.

Expected Deliverables from Phase II of Project Chaman- 

  • Operational district/state/national level estimates for 7 major horticultural crop
  • Horticultural expansion plans for selected districts
  • Horticultural maps for selected districts
  • Orchard maps on geoportal
  • Methodology for new crops
  • Horticultural crop signature library
  • Development of Yield models
  • Capacity building

Latest context related to Project Chaman Phase II –

  • Recently, the Department of Agriculture, Cooperation and Farmers Welfare released the Third Advanced Estimate (2018-19) of Area and Production of various Horticulture Crops.
  • As per the report, the total horticulture production in the country is estimated to be 313.85 million tonnes which are 0.69% higher than the horticulture production of 311.71 million tonnes in 2017-18.
  • The area under horticulture crops has increased to 25.49 million hectares in 2018-19 from 25.43 million hectares in 2017-18.

The above details would help candidates prepare for UPSC 2022.

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