Farming: Last year when a group of farmers in Dungmin gewog, Pemagatshel shifted to ginger cultivation, they were skeptical if it was the right decision.
Unable to find a solution to the increasing wildlife attacks, the seven farmers decided to cultivate ginger on a large scale instead of maize and vegetable.
Today, going by the success of their first harvest, the farmers are a happy lot. Not only were they able to fetch a good price but could set an example to other villagers as well.
The group known as the Zachay Jampel Detsen was able to earn more than Nu 20,000 supplying ginger to schools, RNR sector and some parts of Samdrupjongkhar.
The chairman of the farmer’s group Guna Tshering said that the income would have been far less had they continued with maize and vegetable cultivation.
“When we’re dependent on the vegetables and maize, besides lack of market, wildlife attacks made it worse for us to generate a good income,” he said. “But ginger cultivation served as a good source of income.”
Guna Tshering said they have deposited their first saving in a bank. The members plan to save more and use the savings during emergency for the members and buy a machine as well.
Following the success, seven more villagers have joined the group. The group is confident that they would have more members joining them by this year.
Guna Tshering said that they cultivated about 650 kgs of ginger with seedlings distributed by the gewog office on an acre of land that belonged to one of the members. “We’re planning to expand the land and the ginger plantation as well,” he said.
There are about 60 households in Dungmin chiwog.
The group members said that they are also trying to encourage other villagers since the market is good and ginger cultivation is the first of its kind in the gewog.
The group is confident of a successful harvest this year.
By Yangchen C Rinzin, Pemagatshel