The quality of the strawberry being produced at Siliguri, has impressed Japanese officials
Kwasaki-Rikuso Transportation Co, Ltd, formerly a subsidiary of Nissan Motor Corporation, Japan, has evinced interest in providing technical assistance to Sukumar Mullik in the scientic preservation of the strawberry variety that he has been producing in his farm in Matigara, off Siliguri in North Bengal. A top delegation from KRT which visited Mullik’s farm middle of January this year felt that the company could provide him with technical know-how to further improve production and subsequent preservation of this rich variery of strawberry. KRT has already made its presence felt in West Bengal, with the company undertaking construction of a state-of-the-art cold storage for preservation of fruits and crops at Singur in Hooghly district.
Quoting the KRT Indian director Paran Das, Mr Pandey said the quality of the strawberry being produced at Siliguri, has impressed the Japanese officials who, in turn, expressed their eagerness to establish a `cold chain’ in the state to enable the farmers to obtain the right price for their produce. A cold storage like the one being built in Singur, could revolutionise the farming prospects in North Bengal as a large number of fruits and other vegetables perish in this part of the state in view of an acute lack of proper facilities for preservation, he pointed out. The KRT officials had reportedly expressed their surprise and dismay after having learnt that the farmers in North Bengal have perforce to literally throw away their produce in the backyard of their gardens as they fail to preserve the excess production in view of a near-absence of a proper cold storage in the region. Barring KRT, no investor has so far evinced any interest in investing in this kind of a cold chain in North Bengal. Not only Mullik, but other farmers of the region are quite excited about the KRT proposal. The proposed KRT cold chain, when implemented, could ring in a new era in agriculture in North Bengal.
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