(The Gist of Science Reporter) Nagaland Falls Back on Traditional Rice [FEB-2018]

(The Gist of Science Reporter) Nagaland Falls Back on Traditional Rice [FEB-2018]

Nagaland Falls Back on Traditional Rice

Varieties to Combat Climate Change RISING temperature, erratic rainfall and occurrence of moderate drought are beginning to impact food production in Nagaland. In order to meet the challenge of climate changes, the state is now turning to its forgotten resource- traditional food crops that can withstand higher temperatures and water-stressed condition.

The hilly state has initiated steps to revive traditional rice as well as millet varieties which over the years gave way to high-yielding
crop varieties for various reason. Though farmers are not growing traditional varieties for sustenance, they are still the custodian of
knowledge about them. In wake of climate change, these varieties will be promoted among farmers, as they are the best bet for
adapting to changing climate.

The biological diversity of rice in the state is tremendous – 867 traditional ‘landraces’ of rice have been identified by the State
Agriculture Research Station (SARS) at Mokokchung. These rice varieties are broadly categorised as glutinous, brown and aromatic, and most of them are grown under the jhum or shifting cultivation system practiced by different Naga tribes in the state.

The state government has initiated a project called “gene pool conservation of indigenous rice varieties under traditional integrated
rotational farming system for promoting livelihood and food security as climate change adaption strategy .” The Rs. 24 crore project will be supported by the National Adaptation Fund for Climate Changes. It will be implemented in one village in each selected block in five districts – Tuensang, Wokha, Zunheboto, Mokokchung and Kohima – over the next three years.

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Courtesy: Science Reporter