The production of natural rubber (NR) during May 2017 has logged a surge of 8.7 % as compared to that in the same period last year. Production during May 2017 is being reported at 50,000 tonne, while it was 46,000 tonne in May 2016. Production in the first two months of the current fiscal is 98,000 tonne, an increase of 15.3% as compared to 85,000 tonne during the same period last year. Anticipated production for the current year is 8 lakh tonne, said a spokesperson of Rubber Board, here. With the help of RPSs (Rubber Producers’ Societies), the board has been continuing its activities to make rubber cultivation remunerative by increasing production, productivity and reducing cost of cultivation & production, said release by the board.
The board’s annual mass contact programme had about 50,000 participants in 800 meetings conducted at various rubber growing areas as part of the mass contact programme. Practices such as weekly tapping, controlled upward tapping, rain-guarding, online fertiliser recommendation, scheme for intercropping, rubber tapper skill development programme under Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Vikas Yojana (PMKVY) have been activated.
The second phase for training for 22,000 persons in rubber tapping and processing in Kerala, Tripura, Assam, Tamil Nadu and Karnataka, under PMKVY has also commenced. In the first phase of the training programme, 10,000 persons were trained. The impact assessment of already conducted programmes shows positive effects in productivity. According to the board, the pending rubber plantation subsidy to the tune of Rs 60 lakh has been released. Another amount of Rs 40 lakh will be released shortly. As part of the ‘Digital India’ campaign, the board is promoting digital extension services.