Pakistan goes ahead with olive plantation drive

The government has advanced a Rs 382 million plan to encourage olive production around the country by way of allocating regional belts especially in the 3 provinces together with Punjab, Balochistan, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Fata with a purpose to minimise the yearly import invoice burden of olive oil on the national kitty.

“Under the project, gardens spreading over 800 acres of land suitable for olive cultivation would be cultivated in the country,” disclosed an respectable of the Pakistan Agriculture Research Council (PARC) this while speaking to this scribe.

He said that underneath the undertaking, the olive gardens over 300 hectares in Balochistan; 100 hectares in Khyber Pakhtwankhwa; 300 hectares in Fata and 100 hectares in Potohar area (Punjab) would be cultivated.

The PARC will coordinate and supervise the olive cultivation mission at a countrywide degree, in association with the researchers from BARI.

Olive Fruit

Several agricultural scientists and financial analysts have emphasised the significance of olive cultivation for the rural economic system of Pakistan. The state government of Punjab has already declared the Potohar house “Olive Valley.”
According to officers at PARC, this initiative will help generate higher income for farmers in the nation. Olive is a high-value agricultural product, which is able to also convey within the much-needed foreign currency, if exported to different markets. Better economic realization from olive farming is prone to give a boost to the socioeconomic prerequisites of the farmers in Pakistan and help cut back poverty within the rural regions.

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At provide, the full home consumption of suitable for eating oil is round 1.9 million tons, out of which 1.3 million lots oil is being imported from abroad annually spending an enormous quantity of Rs 28 billion.

The breakup of the olive oils reveals that the entire production of banola oil is round 450,000 lots, sunflower 77,000 lots, canola 32,000 heaps and different seeds is 700 tons in step with 12 months in the country. Hence, 70 in step with cent oil is being imported against the local production of 30 per cent.

In this admire, the government is paying particular attention to fortify the cultivation of canola, olive and palm oil within the country to save valuable foreign currencies, he added.
Agriculture experts are of the view that since Pakistan lies in between the North and South belts, it is possible to grow olive in the country. The wild species of olive are found abundantly in numerous portions of the country specifically within the provinces of NWFP and Balochinstan which indicate that progressed varieties may also be grown effectively.

It is to be mentioned right here that as a way to push the crop on business strains, advanced varieties of olive imported from Italy have already been planted in Swat, Dir, Malakand, Loralai and at NARC Islamabad. In addition to the Italian cultivars, 4 Turkish olive cultivars also are offered and planted at NARC for analysis studies throughout 1986. Some of these cultivars have shown just right performance and giving just right yield in Baluchistan and at NARC Islamabad for last four-five years.

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“Yes, we have the expansion of olive tree plantation in the country with a special reference to olive nurseries set up under the said university and project of grafting of wild olives available in various parts of the country especially upper parts,” mentioned Prof. Dr. Muhammad Ashraf of the Arid University of Agriculture Rawalpindi.
According to him, if the venture displays a big progress, it would significantly contribute surely minimise the olive oil import bill which, at the moment, is increasing yearly.

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