First-ever ginger cultivation programme inaugurated by Dr Sania Nishtar

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CHAKWAL: The first-ever ginger cultivation programme was inaugurated by Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on Poverty Alleviation Dr Sania Nishtar on Sunday in Balkasar area of Chakwal.

Speaking on the occasion, she said ginger could emerge as a major crop and could be a game-changer for the farming community, adding that agriculture was profoundly linked with poverty alleviation.

The ginger crop was grown over a period of 11 months and the celebration was organised by Agrionics Farms. Being an essential ingredient of Pakistani cuisine, ginger is high in demand but unfortunately it is not grown here and is imported to meet domestic needs.

Participants of the event were informed about sustainable production and management of ginger and how to properly harvest the crop.

The government, private sector, research institutions, innovators and farmers can work together to build synergies and develop agri-value chains, she said, adding that this would lead to creation of livelihoods, economic growth and boost of foreign trade.

Pakistan Agricultural Research Council (PARC) Chairman Dr Ghulam Mohammad Ali, director of Vegetable Research Institute, Faisalabad, Mohammad Najeebullah and other experts were also present.

Experts presented research-based information about the agricultural benefits of growing ginger locally. After sharing of information, all participants went to the field for formal inauguration and demonstrations.

Mr Mohammad Ali briefed Dr Sania about success of the ginger cultivation project and its potential to boost Pakistan’s farming sector.

This variety of ginger has been successfully grown and field tested and can yield up to approximately 8 to 10 tonnes of ginger per acre, he added.

Other experts said Pakistan has started its journey towards self sustainability. With the help of drip irrigation, sprinklers and shading fabric, it is the first ginger farming project that turned out to be commercially successful.

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