(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.
Courtesy: Science Reporter