Horticulture, Floriculture, Commercial crops, Bamboo Production – MIDH, NFSM-CC, etc.

Horticulture, Floriculture, Commercial crops, Bamboo Production – MIDH, NFSM-CC, etc.

US research highlights Indian farming practices


From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :

Prelims level : Types of farming mentioned in news

Mains level : NA

A paper has recently published in the US has found that Integrated farming with intercropping increases food production while reducing environmental footprint.

What is the finding?

This work found that:

  1. Relay planting enhances yield
  2. Within-field rotation or strip rotation allowing strips for planting other plants (such as grass, fruits) besides the major crop was more fruitful
  3. Soil munching that is, available means such as crop straw, in addition to the major crop such as wheat or rice, and
  4. No-till or reduced tillage, which increases the annual crop yield up by 15.6% to 49.9%, and decreasing the environmental footprint by 17.3%, compared with traditional monoculture cropping

Various terms mentioned

[A] Relay planting

  • Relay planting means the planting of different crops in the same plot, one right after another, in the same season.
  • Examples of such relay cropping would be planting rice (or wheat), cauliflower, onion, and summer gourd (or potato onion, lady’s fingers and maize), in the same season.
  • Benefits: It is less risk since you do not have to depend on one crop alone. It also means better distribution of labour, insects spread less, and any legumes actually add nitrogen to the soil.

[B] Strip cropping

  • Strip cropping has been used in the U.S. (where the fields are larger than those in India), where they grow wheat, along with corn and soybean, in the same farm in an alternative manner.
  • However, this needs large lands. The land is divided into strips, and strips of grass are left to grow between the crops.
  • Benefits: Planting of trees to create shelters has helped in stabilising the desert in Western India.

[C] Soil mulching and no-till

  • Soil mulching requires keeping all bare soil covered with straw, leaves, and the like, even when the land is in use.
  • Benefits: Erosion is curtailed, moisture retained, and beneficial organisms, such as earthworms, kept in place. The same set of benefits are also offered by not tilling the soil.

Significance of the findings

  • This research has led to the conclusion that small farm holders can grow more food and have reduced environmental footprint.
  • Current statistics reveal that our country has a significant population of small farmers, many owning less than 2 hectares of land.
  • About 70% of its rural households still depend primarily on agriculture for their livelihood, with 82% of farmers being small and marginal.


UPSC 2022 countdown has begun! Get your personal guidance plan now! (Click here)

Horticulture, Floriculture, Commercial crops, Bamboo Production – MIDH, NFSM-CC, etc.

Honey Adulteration in India


From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :

Prelims level : Not Much

Mains level : Apiculture and its benefits for farmers

10 out of 13 popular honey brands failed a key test of purity, the Centre for Science and Environment (CSE) has claimed in an investigation.

Try this PYQ:

Q.Consider the following kinds of organisms:

  1. Bat
  2. Bee
  3. Bird

Which of the above is/are pollinating agent/agents?

(a) 1 and 2 only

(b) 2 only

(c) 1 and 3 only

(d) 1, 2 and 3

Adulteration in honey

  • The CSE has resorted to the Nuclear Magnetic Resonance (NMR) testing to ascertain the composition of a product at the molecular level.
  • The NMR test is not required by Indian law for honey that is being marketed locally but is needed for export.
  • Current regulations specify around 18 parameters that honey must comply with for producers to label it ‘pure honey.
  • Among the tests employed as per Indian regulations is one to check whether the honey is adulterated with C4 sugar (cane sugar) or C3 sugar (rice sugar).
  • Most samples cleared these tests but failed another test called the Trace Marker for Rice test, to test for rice syrup adulteration.

Significance of the CSE study

  • Adulteration of honey is a global problem with several countries, including India, devising regulations and new tests to check it.
  • It also destroys the livelihoods of bee-keepers who found it unprofitable to make pure honey because sugar-syrup honey was often available at half the price.
  • Some Indian companies in the honey business were importing synthetic sugar syrups from China to adulterate honey.
  • This shows how the business of adulteration has evolved so that it can pass the stipulated tests in India.

Back2Basics: Nuclear Magnetic Resonance (NMR)

  • NMR spectroscopy is a crucial analytical tool for organic chemists.
  • It is a physical phenomenon in which nuclei in a strong constant magnetic field are perturbed by a weak oscillating magnetic field and respond by producing an electromagnetic signal with a frequency characteristic of the magnetic field at the nucleus.
  • It is widely used to determine the structure of organic molecules in solution and study molecular physics and crystals as well as non-crystalline materials.
  • It is also routinely used in advanced medical imaging techniques, such as in magnetic resonance imaging (MRI).

Horticulture, Floriculture, Commercial crops, Bamboo Production – MIDH, NFSM-CC, etc.

Cultivation of ‘Wild’ Arunachal Kiwi


From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :

Prelims level : Arunachal Kiwi

Mains level : Organic farming in India

Recently, the ‘Wild’ Arunachal Kiwi has received organic certification by the Mission Organic Value Chain Development for the North East Region.

Try this PYQ:

Q.Among the agricultural commodities imported by India, which one of the following accounts for the highest imports in terms of value in the last five years?

(a) Spices

(b) Fresh fruits

(c) Pulses

(d) Vegetable oils

Arunachal Kiwi

  • The kiwifruit (Actinidia deliciosa Chev.) is a deciduous fruiting vine native to Yangtze River valley of south and central China.
  • In Arunachal Pradesh, a domesticated variety of kiwi was introduced as a commercial fruit only in 2000.
  • The Ziro Valley specifically located at 1,500-2,000 metres above sea level is the most ideal for kiwi.
  • It is also called “China’s miracle fruit” and “Horticulture wonder of New Zealand”.

Benefits of certification

  • Certification helps producers and handlers; they receive premium prices for the products and have access to fast-growing, local, regional and international markets.

Organic certification in India

  • An agricultural practise/product is considered organic when there are no chemical fertilizers or pesticides involved in its cultivation process.
  • Such certifications in India can be obtained after a strict scientific assessment done by the regulatory body, Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority (APEDA).

Horticulture, Floriculture, Commercial crops, Bamboo Production – MIDH, NFSM-CC, etc.

In news: International Tea Day

The ‘International Tea Day’ gets thumbs up from the UN. Tea is the most consumed drink in the world, second only to water.

It would be no surprise to expect a question based on worldwide tea production:

Q. Among the following, which one is the largest exporter of rice in the world in the last five years? (CSP 2019)

(a) China

(b) India

(c) Myanmar

(d) Vietnam

International Tea Day

  • While the UN has been aware of the popularity of the drink, May 21, 2020, became the first time when it recognized and gave an official nod to International Tea Day.
  • The UN General Assembly proclaimed May 21 as International Tea Day.
  • The day is aimed at promoting sustainable production, consumption and trade of tea.
  • As part of the celebrations, key players in tea production come together and make systematic plans for expansion of demand for tea, particularly in tea producing countries where per capita consumption is relatively low.
  • This day also reminds all actors at global, regional and national levels to ensure that the tea sector continues to play a role in reducing extreme poverty, fighting hunger and safeguarding natural resources.


  • Tea is an aromatic beverage commonly prepared by pouring hot or boiling water over cured leaves of the Camellia sinensis, an evergreen shrub native to East Asia.
  • After water, it is the most widely consumed drink in the world.
  • There are many different types of tea; some, like Darjeeling and Chinese greens, have a cooling, slightly bitter, and astringent flavour.
  • Tea has a stimulating effect in humans primarily due to its caffeine content.
  • China is the leading producer of tea in the world. (Ref.)

Its significance

  • In 2018, over 50 lakh tonnes of tea was consumed globally, according to Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the UN.
  • The origin of tea plantations dates back to 5,000 years. Like many cultures, tea enjoys a special space in Indian culture.
  • With more than 100 varieties being consumed in the country, India is among the top four producers of tea.
  • Currently, tea is grown in more than 35 countries and supports 1.3 crore people including smallholder farmers around the globe.

Back2Basics: Tea cultivation in India

  • India is the second producer of tea in the world and second in terms of land devoted to tea growing as well.
  • Much of India’s tea production is concentrated in the areas of Darjeeling, Nilgiri, Dooars, and Assam, which is the single largest tea growing region in the world. The top 5 growing states in India, ranked by production, are:

1) Assam

2) West Bengal

3) Tamil Nadu

4) Kerala

5) Karnataka

Horticulture, Floriculture, Commercial crops, Bamboo Production – MIDH, NFSM-CC, etc.

[pib] Species in news:  Anthurium


From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :

Prelims level : Anthurium

Mains level : NA

A women innovator from Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala, has developed ten varieties of Anthurium, a flower with high market value, by cross-pollination.


  • An anthurium is a vast group of beautiful blooming plants available in a wide range of colours.
  • Anthurium is one of the best domestic flowering plants in the world.
  • They are decorative as well as purify the surrounding air and remove harmful airborne chemicals like formaldehyde, ammonia, toluene, xylene, and allergens.
  • Its importance of removing toxic substances from the air, NASA has placed it in the list of air purifier plants.
  • Anthurium has larger economic importance because of its eye-catching and beautiful inflorescence and fetches a good market price.

Salient features of the Anthurium varieties are

  • Large beautiful flowers
  • Different colors of spathe and spadix
  • Long stalks
  • Better shelf life
  • Good market value

Horticulture, Floriculture, Commercial crops, Bamboo Production – MIDH, NFSM-CC, etc.

[pib] Nagpur Orange


From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :

Prelims level : Nagpur Orange

Mains level : Export promotion of Nagpur Oranges


The first consignment of Nagpur oranges was flagged off to Dubai from Vashi, Navi Mumbai.

Nagpur Orange

  • Nagpur orange is rustic and pockmarked exterior which is sweet and has juicy pulp.
  • It gives the city of Nagpur its pseudonym Orange City.
  • It oranges blossom during the Monsoon season and are ready to be harvested from the month of December.
  • The Geographical Indication was accorded to the Nagpur Orange by the registrar of GIs in India and is effective as of April 2014.

The best breed

  • Nagpur mandarin in one of the best mandarins in the world. Production of this fruit crop in the central and western part of India is increasing every year.
  • Mrig crop (monsoon blossom), which matures in February – March, has great potential for export since arrivals of mandarin fruit in international market are less during this period.
  • In the whole region only one variety of Nagpur Mandarin is grown.

Horticulture, Floriculture, Commercial crops, Bamboo Production – MIDH, NFSM-CC, etc.

India’s first ‘fruit train’


From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :

Prelims level : Fruit Train

Mains level : Logistics support for horticulture products


A ‘fruit train’, said to be the first of its kind in India, was flagged off from Tadipatri Railway Station in Anantapur district of Andhra.

About the fruit train

  • This is the first time in India that an entire train is being sent to the gateway port (JNPT) for export.
  • This helps save both time and fuel as 150 trucks would have been required to send a consignment of this size by road to JNPT, which is over 900 km away, before the temperature-controlled containers are loaded on ships.
  • The bananas are being exported under the brand name ‘Happy Bananas’.
  • Farmers from Putlur region in Anantapur and Pulivendula in Kadapa district are exporting ‘Green Cavendish’ bananas to many international markets.
1 Comment
Newest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
kesharsingh jamra
kesharsingh jamra
3 years ago

i am hindi mudi


Join us across Social Media platforms.