Meghalaya, one of the seven sisters of the North East is primarily an agricultural state. Its capital, Shillong is also known as the ‘Scotland of the East.’ It has temperate, tropical, and subtropical temperatures which makes it ideal for cultivating different fruit crops. However, a lot of its potential for the development of plantation and food crops lies unutilized. These are mainly grown in Meghalaya agriculture by farmers in their gardens and not for commercial purposes. We have gathered a list of a few fruits and Crops Grown In Meghalaya For Profitable Farming that the state can benefit from growing economically.
1. Crops Grown In Meghalaya For Profitable Farming: Jackfruit
Jackfruit is an abundant tree crop in Meghalaya, yet it requires more attention. Every part of the tree is useful and it is also a miracle food for its nutritional benefits. Raw jackfruit is in great demand as it’s a perfect meat substitute. When it’s ripe it can be an addition to a number of value-basis products like papad, chips, cake, and squash. Jackfruit’s popularity is due to its sweetness which has been in cultivation for centuries in India. It requires a warm and humid climate of hill slopes to grow well.
2. Crops Grown In Meghalaya For Profitable Farming: Kiwi
Kiwi is a fruit native to China and derives its name from the native bird of New Zealand. It is another fruit that has high nutritive value. It has huge demand not only in local markets but in international markets too. Kiwi consumption takes place fresh or along with other fruits in a salad or dessert. It has a major use in the production of wine and squash. It grows best in warm and humid climatic conditions which is why it is ideal to grow in Meghalaya.
3. Crops Grown In Meghalaya For Profitable Farming: Lakadong turmeric
Lakadong turmeric is a miracle spice that cultivates mostly in Lakadong, located in Meghalaya. It is the finest variety of turmeric present in the world. It is popular for its high concentration of curcumin which is 7% in comparison to regular varieties which have only 2-3%. Curcumin is a compound that gives spice antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. It grows in a warm and humid climate that has high rainfall.
4. Crops Grown In Meghalaya For Profitable Farming: Litchi
Litchi is a subtropical fruit that is native to China. It is popular due to the pleasant flavor in its pulp. Litchi is a great source of Vitamin C, phosphorus, protein, and calcium. It grows well in humid climatic conditions with equally distributed rainfall.
5. Meghalaya Crops For Profitable Farming: Khasi Mandarin
Khasi Mandarin is also the ‘King of Oranges’ and ‘Pride of Meghalaya’. This fruit only grows in Meghalaya on its steep slopes. Even though fruits appear on the trees after a few years, the trees have well proper adaptation to the weather there and live a long life. It has high nutritional value and a sweet tangy taste. This makes it excellent for the preparation of jams, pulp concentrates, jams, jellies, and squashes.
6. Meghalaya Crops For Profitable Farming: Passion fruit
Passion fruit is a highly lucrative product to grow as it brings monetary returns to farmers. It is popular for its distinctive taste and aroma. Passion fruit is used in the making of squash and its juice can be blended with other food products. Its leaves are used for medicinal purposes in the North East and Jackfruit has many Health Benefits. It blooms in tropical and subtropical regions.
7. Meghalaya Crops For Profitable Farming: Cashew
Also known as the ‘gold mine’ of wasteland’, cashew trees are native to Brazil. It was originally introduced to India by a Portuguese traveller for controlling soil erosion. Now, it is gaining commercial importance and generating foreign exchange. Cashew is a tropical evergreen tree and is the ‘poor man’s crop and rich man’s food.’ The temperate climate of ‘Garo Hills’ is perfect for cultivating cashews in the region.
Meghalaya has adequate rainfall, soil, and climatic conditions which can support the cultivation of a wide variety of fruits and plantation crops. There is great potential for it to expand agriculturally and benefit commercially from it.