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For the First Time in History, Hing Cultivation begins in India

For the first time ever in history, thing cultivation begins in India in the cold deserts of Himachal and Uttarakhand.

Sangeeta Soni

For the first time ever, Asafoetida, commonly called as Hing is now started to be cultivated in India. And the credit goes to the combined efforts by the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) and the Institute of Himalayan Bio-resource Technology (IHBT).

One of the prime spices used in Indian Kitchen, Hing, has been planted by farmers in the Lahual Valley in Himachal Pradesh.

Annual Import of Hing

According to the records, India imports nearly 1,200 Tonnes of this palatable spice is imported from Afghanistan, Iran, and Uzbekistan, and costs around $100 million per year. Hing is also used for medicinal purposes.

As per the reports, locally growing Hing can help India to save more than 900 crore rupees. 

The CSIR mentioned that shortage of planting material of Ferula Asafoetida plants in the country was a major hindrance in the cultivation of this crop. The IHBT, one of the laboratories of the CSIR, brought in the asafoetida seeds and developed its agro-technology.

Sanjay Kumar, Director, CSIR-IHBT said, “It will cost farmers nearly Rs. 3 lakhs per hectares over next five years and give them a net return of minimum Rs. 10 lakhs from fifth year onwards. In collaboration with state government, we will provide support to farmers with finance and technical know-how. It will be a game-changer for farmers in colder regions of the nation.”

Cultivation Area

Hing crop needs cold and dry conditions for the growth. That is the reason to choose the cold desert areas of Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand, and Arunachal Pradesh are ideal regions for the cultivation of Hing.

Presently, the IHBT has marked 300 hectares for the cultivation of Hing; and will be further expanded to more areas once farmers successfully finish one cycle of five years and check the results.

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