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Samcholing cooperative has 29 members
Samcholing cooperative has 29 members

Green tea plantation to be prioritised

Nim Dorji  | Trongsa

The green tea plantation in Samcholing under Drakteng gewog will be explored and expanded for mass production in the next fiscal year.

At present Samcholing green tea cooperative is running the business with only 29 members.

For green tea development Drakteng gewog has proposed Nu 2 million from the dzongkhag development grant (DDG), which was dropped for not meeting the criteria to get the fund.

Drakteng gup Kingzang Dorji said that the DDG issued for making farm road and making footpath in other gewog are the works that can be done within the gewog and which is being carried by the gewogs all the time.

“The machinery needed for farm road construction is also easily available”.

The DDG guideline states that the grant shall only be used for funding activities that would facilitate economic growth, generate employment, promote tourism and agriculture.

The dzongkhag administration and dzongkhag tshogdu agreed to conduct survey and explore for mass green tea production and include it in flagship programme in the next financial year.

Gup  Kingzang Dorji said that if the fund is used to supply green tea sapling in the community, it will help to boost the local economy.

The gewog had proposed the fund to supply saplings and increase the production.

More locals are into green tea cultivation. They have taken it as the only means of income in the local economy.

The cooperative lacks machine and with few members, they face a challenge to meet the demand. With only one frying pan and a roller, the members take turn to fry and roll the tea leaves.

This problem will be solved as the gewog administration with dzongkhag livestock sector has ordered a frying pan and roller which will reach soon.

A member of the cooperative, Rinchen said that, compared to other crops, it is easy to work with green tea.

“We need not guard against wild animals and also do not have to work hard,”  she added.

She is planning to plant more sapling.

With no other cash crops in the community, the gewog administration has planned to supply green tea sapling to all the households in the gewog.

It takes three years to raise the plant and it can be harvested for twenty years generating income.

At present, the cooperative carries out the processing and packaging from the three-storied building and the products are available in some dzongkhags and the cooperative shop.

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