Odisha Sun Times Bureau
Bhubaneswar, Aug 20:
The Odisha government, which has launched a state potato mission to streamline the production, preservation and distribution of potato in the state, will set up 112 cold stores within three years to prevent its shortfall during the lean season.
This was decided at a high level review meeting of the Food Supplies and Consumer Welfare department presided over by chief minister Naveen Patnaik at the State Secretariat here today.
Construction of these 112 proposed cold stores with a cumulative storage capacity of 7.05 lakh metric tonne will be completed by 2017-18 with private participation.
It was revealed that out of a total of 63 private agencies, the state government has selected 41 agencies for construction of the cold stores. The state government has decided to provide rebate in power tariff to the cold stores.
The chief minister directed the department to begin the process for development of power infrastructure after identification of the location for the proposed cold stores and work in coordination with the Agriculture, Cooperation and Energy departments to expedite the construction work.
The meeting also revealed that the state government has set a target to increase potato production to 11.25 lakh metric tonne in 60,000 hectares during kharif and rabi seasons by 2018.
As against the target of 2000 hectares , potato cultivation has been taken up in 2200 hectares during the 2015-16 kharif season, sources revealed.