The annual average production of vegetables in Goa has remained constant for past many years and is standing at 84,290 tonnes, which can fulfill only 25 to 30 per cent of the total vegetable requirement of the state.
The deputy director of the department of agriculture (farms), Mr V M Khandeparkar told ‘The Navhind Times’ on Tuesday that the remaining 70 to 75 per cent of the vegetable requirement is taken care of by regular supply from Belgaum. “At present, the total vegetable area cultivated in Goa is 8,213 hectare including 5,194 hectare of land cultivated during the Kharif season and 3,019 hectare land cultivated during Rabi season,” he informed, adding that the vegetable area under cultivation is also constant and not growing.
Speaking further, Mr Khandeparkar said that the average yield of vegetables in Goa is 10,263 kg per hectare. Stating that ladyfinger is the most appropriate summer crop of Goa, he maintained that though cabbage and cauliflower are also grown in small quantities, Goa has no low temperature climate as required by them and hence the heads of these vegetables remain undeveloped.
Normally, large varieties of vegetables are grown in Goa, Mr Khandeparkar stated pointing out, “They include cucumbits like cucumber, radish, ridge gourd, bitter gourd, snake gourd, ash gourd, pumpkin including its flowers, muskmelon, cluster bean and brinjal, besides baby corn and sweet corn.” He also maintained that leafy vegetables like red amaranthus are grown in Goa. Those vegetables which are not grown in Goa include potato, tomato, beetroot, carrot, French beans, green peas, Kashmiri mirchi and so on, Mr Khandeparkar added. While observing that vegetable cultivation is a profitable business, Mr Khandeparkar mentioned that very few people try their hand at it as the vegetables are perishable items and need to be sold as fast as possible after they are plucked. “The other reasons being not getting proper rate through the sale of vegetables and absence of storage facilities,” he pointed out.