Tandrust Punjab Mission has curtailed unwanted usage of agro chemicals: Director

Chandigarh, Nov 17 (PTI) The Tandrust Punjab Mission has curtailed unwanted usage of agro chemicals in the state, thus saving Rs 355 crore on farming input costs, K S Pannu, the mission's director said on Sunday.

In a statement, Pannu informed that the average consumption of pesticides during Kharif 2018 has been 3838 metric tonnes which costs more than Rs 2000 crore.

'However, during Kharif 2019 there has been on an average 35 per cent reduction in usage of insecticides/pesticides. It includes reduction in use of weedicide and fungicide. The decrease in pesticide usage alone is about 18 per cent,' he said.

This sizable reduction in consumption of insecticides/ pesticides has lead to saving of Rs 355 crore at the level of farmers, he said.

Crediting the achievement to sustained awareness campaign under Tandrust Mission Punjab,  he informed that numerous awareness camps/seminars/workshops have been organised in every nook and corner of the state by the officers of agriculture department, to sensitise farmers about unwanted usage of pesticides.

Cotton and basmati rice crops are the main areas where attention was focussed for reducing the usage of pesticides, he said, adding that a special campaign was launched to ensure the availability of only high quality chemicals to the farmers.

'Besides, vigorous checking and sampling of agro chemicals was done to weed out substandard and spurious products,' he said.

He said that reduction in the use of urea by about 2 lakh tonnes in Kharif 2019 has also considerably helped to prevent the spread of insects which in turn lead to curtailing the usage of insecticides.

Tandrust Punjab Mission aims to make people healthy by ensuring a good living environment and healthy food habits. PTI SUN RHL