Udaipur : Udaipur farmer, Mr. Nana Lal Sharma of the Jhalod district, managed to earn great profits by adopting an innovative method of farming white musli. He felt the urge to farm musli after he witnessed it being cultivated and sold by the Kathodi tribals. Like every other farmer Mr. Sharma was used to farming wheat, maize and urad in his fields.
In July 2001, Mr Sharma purchased 5000 musli plants from the Dharavan forest. The plants began to germinate after the fourth day of being sown in the fields. After one month the plants bore white flowers. The roots of these plants were ready for farming again in 20002.
Mr. Sharma harvested the plants in September 2002. The Department of Agriculture provided full guidance and support to Mr. Sharma. After receiving further knowledge from the Kathodi community, he began selling dry musli at a profit of Rs. 80,000 in half acres of agricultural land. By sowing these seeds one can get 15 times more seed volume. After observing his success other farmers began farming musli as well.
After peeling the skin off of musli, Mr. Sharma had the thought to sell dry musli powder instead of selling dry musli to increase his earnings. He tried sellingmusli powder but realised that the produce was harder to manufacture. One consumer complained that musli mixed with milk can’t be consumed because it’s too lubricating. To solve this problem, Mr. Sharma had the thought to turn the powder musli into capsules for sale.
Mr. Sharma has been producing 1.5 to 2 lakhs musli capsules per year and selling them at the rate of Rs. 2 per capsule. He is also selling seeds and earning a profit of Rs. 4 lakhs. With support from the State Government the production level of musli can increase to 100 crores per year.
Currently, there are 3500 farmers growing musli in the Kollari, Dharavan, Jatwada, Cagri, Masanana, Oda, Dhobawada, Talai, among other villages in Jhandol Tehsil in the Udaipur district. This number can be increased to more than 15,000 farmers. The area under musli cultivation needs to be extended to Kotra, the cultivation area needs to be increased and a processing unit needs to be established specifically dedicated to packing of musli capsules and powder. Furthermore a proper marketing network needs to be established for the musli farmers to ensure that they are able to sell their produce in the market.
Value added products of Musli will also be showcased during the ‘Global Rajasthan Agritech Meet’ (GRAM) in Udaipur.