Raipur. Minor forest produces worth Rs 1173 crore have been collected in Chhattisgarh in last two years, which is the highest in the country. This is the reason why Chhattisgarh has been awarded 11 national awards in the field of minor forest produce collection, which is the highest number of awards conferred upon a state in the country. These include awards in 9 different sub-categories for the works being done by Chhattisgarh State Minor Forest Produce Association and the awards in 02 categories for other works.
During his two-day visit to Chhattisgarh today, Union Minister of Tribal Affairs Mr. Arjun Munda visited various places of Bastar region and took information about the collection and processing of minor forest produce etc. He lauded the significant works being done in the state in the field of minor forest produce collection and processing. He said that Chhattisgarh is doing well in the field of minor forest produce collection, which is creating maximum employment opportunities for the collectors of minor forest produce including tribals and forest dwellers. Moreover, they are also being benefitted by the systematic procurement of minor forest produce at minimum support price.
Meanwhile, Union Minister Mr. Arjun Munda also visited Van Dhan Vikas Kendra Dhuragaon located in Lohandigunda Tehsil of Bastar district and encouraged the members of self-help groups. Procurement and processing of minor forest produce such as tamarind, mango, bael, amla, jamun and chironji is being done at this Van Dhan Kendra. Villages namely Parapur, Lamraguda, Kuthar, Matnar, Mardom, Badrenga, Kasturpal, Anjar, Alnar, Mandar, Chappar-Bhanpuri and Katnar are associated with Dhuragaon Van Dhan Vikas Kendra. Union Minister also visited the site of the Trifood project being set up in Jagdalpur and also addressed the Van Dhan conference at the project site.
It is noteworthy that presently, 52 species of minor forest produce are being procured at minimum support price in Chhattisgarh. The number of minor forest produce collection centers in the state was 590 in year 2018, which has increased to 4 thousand 337 in year 2021. In this period of time, the number of members involved in the manufacturing and processing of herbal products has increased from 4239 to 17 thousand 424. The quantity of minor forest produce collected has increased from 5400 quintals to 6 lakh 21 thousand quintals. Minor forest produce worth about Rs 4 crore was collected in the state in the year 2018, which has reached Rs 158 crore in year 2021.