A two-day training programme on mushroom production technology for extension functionaries including departmental officers and NGOs of the state commenced on Thursday at State Horticulture Nursery (SHN), 4th mile Dimapur.
The training organized by Directorate of Mushroom Research (DMR) (ICAR) Chambaghat, Solan and directorate of horticulture, Kohima has been sponsored by government of India under Horticulture Technology Mission for north-eastern states.
The resource persons for the training include principal scientist Dr. B. Vijay, senior scientist Dr. Satish Kumar and scientist Mahantest Shirur from DMR, Solan.
Delivering the keynote address, principal scientist Dr. B. Vijay said the training, a first of its kind in the state has been conducted by funds provided by ICAR for northeastern states. Even though the team had conducted similar trainings in other parts of the northeast, this was their first visit to Nagaland.
So far the team has trained around 600 farmers around northeast and Dr. Vijay said the response was overwhelming.
Talking on the Directorate of Mushroom Research (DMR) (ICAR) Chambaghat, Solan, he said there were 10 different scientists working in research of cultivating different mushrooms. However, he said more than research, extinction of some of the species of mushrooms had made it vital for developing training programmes.
Stating that even though India had the world’s largest farm in Chandigarh, it stood nowhere in the world scenario when it came to mushroom production. With available resources, cheap labor, and essential climate conditions, he said Nagaland was very good for mushroom cultivation and urged the participants to start large scale cultivation of mushroom.
Dr. Vijay expressed hope that the training would give an insight on mushroom cultivation and encouraged the participants stating that under horticulture, mushroom was the only crop which gave the most handsome returns.
Also delivering a short speech, Nagaland University associate professor Dr. Daiho said Nagas had a fear psychosis of eating mushrooms after many incidents of families dying after consuming mushrooms and therefore urged the participants to popularize cultivated mushrooms which were not poisonous among the masses.
The participants for the training included officials from various horticulture units across the state. The inaugural function was chaired by deputy director horticulture Pawan Kumar, welcome address was delivered by Dimapur SHN horticulture officer M. Sashi and vote of thanks was given by Dimapur SHN officer in-charge Mesetuonuo.