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Agriculture in Goa

Introduction :
Goa, is a tiny State located on West Coast of India, spread over in an area of 3.61 sq. km. The State is flanked on the east by Sahyadri Mountains and on the West with Arabian Sea. The Northern tip of Goa borders Maharashtra State while Southern area is bordered by Karnataka State. Goa is a rich treasure of biodiversity. The State of Goa was ruled by Portuguese for nearly 450 years till it was liberated in 1961. For last 50 years of Liberation, the State has made a remarkable progress in agriculture sector besides various other spheres of economic upliftment.  The GSDP of Goa stands at Rs. 80,000 per annum. Though tourism and  mining are at forefront in terms of employment generation, agriculture has been providing livelihood support to almost 12% of the population. The Agriculture alongwith Forests in Goa is instrumental in keeping Goa green and cover nearly 6 5% of the total area of the State.

In the last fifty year of liberation, the State has seen major changes in the agriculture sector. At the time of liberation, nearly 70% of the population was involved in agriculture as their full time occupation. Paddy was the predominant crop of the State followed by Cashew and Coconut. The cropping pattern is changing and today, we have Cashewnut which is cultivated in nearly 55,000 Ha with paddy covering about 31,000 Ha. The cultivation of horticultural crops is gaining importance due to the better returns, lower risk and tolerance of these crops for part time farming.

Climate and Rainfall:
Goa receives rain from the South - West monsoons. The average rainfall is 2800 mm. rainy season is spread over four months from June To September. Occasional thunder showers are experienced in May and October. Goa experiences warm and humid tropical climate. The summer temperature ranges from 240C to 360C. In winter, the mercury hovers between 210C and 300C.

Humidity:
The average relative humidity is 75.90%.

Altitude:
In Goa, the land elevation ranges from sea level to 1,022 meters. The highest point is the Wagheri Hills in Sattari taluka. The Ghat section of NH-4, rises to 650 meters MSL near Anmod.

Soils:
The soils of Goa are mostly lateritic (81%). They are sandy loam to silt-loam  texture, well drained and highly acidic (5.5 to 6 .5 pH). These soils have moderate organic carbon and are poor in potash.

About 11% of the soils located along the seacoast and esturaries are sandy-to-sandy learns. They include the Ker lands and beach fronts. The remaining 8% of the soils are alluvial in nature. The Khazans and adjoining areas have alluvial soil with high water tables and are subject to inundation by saline water.


Land Types:
1.Khazan Land:- It consists of low - lying areas, often below sea level along the estuaries. This land is used for monsoon paddy crop followed by Rabi vegetables. In limited areas, pisciculture is also done by regulating flow of water.

2.Ker Land:- This is flat land at low elevation above sea level and having a high water table. Aerable, sandy to sandy loams soils fir for multiple cropping through irrigation. Rabi paddy vegetables, pulses, etc. are grown in these areas.

3.Morod Land:- It refers to upland or terraced field suitable for Horticultural / Plantation crops or single rain fed crop of rice.

Irrigation:
In Goa traditional sources of irrigation were storage tanks,  small diversion bandharas,  natural springs and wells. For rabi paddy (vaigon) irrigation was mostly from storage tanks located in Salcete and Bardez. The usual practice is to cultivate kharif paddy in tank bed and the water weir is closed early in September after harvest of Kharif paddy. In Panda, Sanguem and Bicholirn small kucha "diversion" works are constructed on Nalas to irrigate paddy fields during Rabi. Considerable area under arecanut depends on various springs at higher altitudes.
 
After liberation of Goa, a number of Government "lift irrigation schemes" were commissioned. Irrigation wells were also opened. Further by commissioning of Salaulim Irrigation Project at Sanguem aid Anjunem Irrigation Project., State has added to irrigate an area of more than 10,000 ha.


Agricultural Development Programme:
The State of Goa is providing assistance to agriculture at all levels to provides substantial returns to rural people. The Department of Agriculture provides assistance for farmer from land preparation to the extent of marketing of the produce. The Department of Agriculture with its head quarter at Tonca, Panaji implements developmental programme through Zonal Agricultural Offices located in each taluka of Goa. The Department has plant production centres in their agricultural farms. Machinery provision centres at the Taluka Level and Training Centre at District Level. The Soil Testing Laboratories are located at district level where soil health cards are issued for major and micronutrients.

 Being a progressive State, the farmers face tremendous shortage of manual labour. The dependence on machines for activities in agriculture is the emerging trend. The land holding of farmers of Goa is small and nearly 80% of farmers own less than 1 ha. of land . The smaller machines are preferred and government provides financial assistance for such machines. The Government promotes large scale cultivation of various crops for which assistance for seed, pesticides, manures besides land preparation is provided.

Goa is perhaps the only State where the farmers are assured of the price for their produce. The State provides assurance of support price in case of paddy,. Coconut, arecaut, oilpalm sugarcane which safeguard the farmers against any losses due to collapse in market price to keep farming at its prime level.

The farmers are provided assistance at the taluka level which are located at Pernem, Bardez, Bicholim, sattari, Tiswadi, salcete, Ponda, Sanguem, Canacona & Quepem.

Agro Processing:
Processing adds value to Agriculture produce. Cashew kernel processing, Feni extraction are important agro industry with Fruit processing like Mango, Kokum, Jamun supporting the sector. Agro
cottage industries making Papad, Pickles, Medicine, Masala etc. are also coming up.

Marketing:
The marketing of the Agriculture produce is done in the Govt. market yards,  Co-operative societies, Private dealers, local market etc.

Agro Tourism in Goa:
Goa is famous for tourism all over the world. It is picking up as one of the preferred Agro Eco Tourism destination. Farmers having Agriculture as base with spice plantation / horticulture plantation, floriculture and nature resources like rivers, ponds, rich biodiversity, jungles with various flora and fauna, adventurous sports,  healthy and peaceful environment with entertainment are venturing in to this business along with Agriculture.

Visitors & tourists also prefer this as they have a relaxing place where they can refresh themselves  over a weekend.

Agriculture Scenario & Land utilization in Goa
Pattern of land area in Ha-2009

 

Agriculture Scenario & Land utilization in Goa
Pattern of land area in Ha-2009

TOTAL AREAFOR LAND UTILIZATION

 

3,61 ,113

FOREST COVER

1.25,473 - 34.74%

LAND NOT AVAILABEL FOR CULTIVATION

37 ,137

PERMANENT PASTURES & OTHER GRAZING LAND

1,305

CULTIVABLE WASTE LAND

52,533

NET AREAS OWN

1,31,387

AREA SOWN MORET HAN ONCE

28,733

FOOD GRAIN CROPS

55,148 HA. - 37.65%

HORTICULTURE CROPS

1,01,481 HA. - 59 .54 %

SUGARCANE, OIL SEEDS

3,721 HA. - 2.81%

IRRIGATED AREA

38,563 HA. - 22 %

RAINFED AREA

1,21 ,757 - 78%

POPULATION SUPPORTED BY AGRICULTU RE

16%

HOLDING UPTO 2 HA.

92 %

TOTAL CROPPED AREA

1,60,320 - 46 .94%

 

 

Progress in Agriculture (Since Liberation) - 50 Years

 

 

Name of the Crop

1960-61

2009-10

Area

(Ha)

Total Production (Ton)

Area

(Ha)

Total Production (Ton)

 

 

 

 

 A

 g

  r

  i

 c

 u

  l

  t

 u

r

 e 

Paddy

 

Pulses

 

Groundnut

 

Sugarcane

 

Cashewnut

 

Coconut

 

 

Arecanut

 

Banana

 

Pineapple

 

Vegetables

 

Black Pepper

50302

 

6998

 

50

 

70

 

32517

 

18497

 

 

1721

 

1100

 

40

 

78

 

-

79948

 

3500

 

49

 

2822

 

3000

 

70

(million nuts)

 

1735

 

6600

 

400

 

634

 

-

47104

 

7890

 

2828

 

893

 

55732

 

25686

 

 

1713

 

2219

 

273

 

5671

 

717

150919

 

8535

 

8055

 

52343

 

17556

 

128.76

(million nuts)

 

2795

 

24662

 

4520

 

58130

 

230