Indian Saffron carpet to cover the Northeast region soon

The richest spice of the Kashmir valley 'Saffron' is soon to extend to the Northeast region of India. The seeds from the plant are transported from Kashmir to Sikkim. They have attuned and in flowering stage in Yangyang in the Southern part of the North-Eastern state. Union territory of Jammu & Kashmir holds the Saffron production control in its geographical area for a prolonged period. 

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Saffron bowl of Kashmir, Pampore region, is the main contributor to saffron production, followed by Budgam, Srinagar, and Kishtiwar districts. The National Mission on Saffron focuses on various measures to improve its farming, they were limited to the specified areas of Kashmir. North East Centre For Technology Application and Reach (NECTAR), an autonomous body under the Department of Science & Technology, Government of India has supported a pilot project to explore the feasibility of growing saffron in North East region of India, with the same quality and in higher quantity. The test was carried out by the Botany and Horticulture department of Sikkim Central University. The test was made to understand the soil and actual pH conditions of Yangyang of Sikkim and a comparison with the saffron growing areas of Kashmir was made. 

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Saffron seed/corms were air transported upon purchase from Kashmir to Yangyang site by the department. One person with prior experience in saffron growth, was engaged and stationed to look after the complete growing process, along with the faculty of the university. In the month of September and October they were irrigated and the matching climatic conditions yielded good results. The project also focuses post-harvest management  including drying and value addition of saffron. Other parts of the North East Region along with Micro Food Enterprises are in exploration. 

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