|10 May 2017|
Press Release No. 627/17
CM LAYS FOUNDATION STONE FOR ORGANIC TEA FACTORY AT UMSNING
Chief Minister, Dr Mukul M Sangma laid the Foundation Stone of the Proposed Organic Tea Factory of Arsla Organic Tea Growers’ & Producers’ Cooperative Society Ltd today at a function held at Tea Development Centre, Umsning in the presence of Chief Advisor, Government of Meghalaya, D D Lapang who attended the function as the Guest of Honour. Delivering the Inaugural Address, Chief Guest, Dr Mukul M Sangma congratulated Arsla for showing commitment and determination in spite of the hurdles the society faced in its establishment. He said that Meghalaya is fortunate to be blessed with opportunities in abundance and it is important to identify these potentials to take advantage for the progress and prosperity of the state. The Chief Minister also said that tea is linked with the lives and tradition of the people of the state and organic being the buzz word in the modern world beverage consumers of tea and coffee have also become health conscious of the drink they consume. He added that organic products have a niche market and it is important that farmers producing organic products be given the right support to help create a sustainable Agriculture that meets global standards. He said that tea gardens can become Tourist destinations for high end tourists by creating infrastructures in the tea gardens and organic agriculture can be linked to Eco Tourism. He urged the tea growers to take advantage of Mission Organic to increase the value of their products. Dr Mukul M Sangma also called for coordination and integration and the need to converge relevant schemes to promote organic farming in the state in an integrated manner. He also informed that the Draft Policy for Tea and Coffee has been finalized and the government is committed to support tea growers of the state by aggregating the resources. Earlier, B W Chyne, Secretary of the Society gave a brief background of the society and highlighted the biggest challenge before the society to have a dedicated organic tea processing unit. Among others who spoke at the function were Guest of Honour, D D Lapng, Commissioner & Secretary, Agriculture, P Sampat Kumar and Assistant Director of Agriculture, Maqbool Lyngdoh Suiam. Also present was Shakil Ahmed, Joint Secretary, Horticulture, Government of India, senior officers from Agriculture, Horticulture, Commerce & Industries and from Ri Bhoi District besides members, tea farmers and officials from the society.