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Farmers Can Easily Earn Rs 3 Lakh per acre by Growing Medicinal & Aromatic Plants

In this rapidly growing industry, there are many farmers’ in India who are earning around Rs 3 lakh per acre through cultivation of medicinal plants.

Abha Toppo
Aromatic Plants can give you really good income if done properly

In this rapidly growing industry, there are many farmers’ in India who are earning around Rs 3 lakh per acre through cultivation of medicinal plants. 

Herbs and aromatic plants are widely used in herbal medicines as well as personal care products and this is the reason for farmers’ high earnings. Ateesh, Kutki, Shankhapushpi, Kuth, Karanja and Kapikachhu are few herbs that mean little to the urban customer but they are a big source of income for the farmers. According to industry estimates, the herbal products market stands at Rs 50,000 crore.

On the other hand, government data says that land devoted to aromatic plants & herbs are still very small i.e. 6.34 lakh hectares out of the total currently cropped area of 1,058.1 lakh hectares. But the surprising fact is that farmers get very good returns from it.

Earning from medicinal plants

A farmer who cultivates ateesh that is mainly used in ayurvedic medicine can earn Rs 2.5 to 3 lakh / acre. On the other hand, farmer who grows lavender can earn Rs 1.2 to 1.5 lakh per acre. And to get these returns, a farmer, Bharat Bhushan from Jammu and Kashmir’s Khellani village had switched from maize to lavender.

Another small farmer from Himachal’s Kinnaur district Vidya Karan has a multi-herb collection, which includes ateesh - Rs 2.5 to 3 lakh per acre; karu - Rs 1.5 to 2 lakh per acre & rattan jot - Rs 1.15 lakh/acre. The farmer says that the best thing about these herbal plants is they don’t need much water and fertilizers.

Dabur, one of India's largest Ayurvedic medicine & natural consumer products manufacturer is also working with these farmers to help them grow medicinal plants such as shankhapushpi in Barmer, Rajasthan.

Director of Natural Remedies, Amit Agarwal said “Some high-value herbs like kutki, ateesh and kuth are at present more gainful because of supply shortage”. He said that on an average, a grower can get Rs 60,000/acre by growing these herbs. The company is also engaged in contract farming of herbs on 1,043 acre of land.

A Sudhakar, Dabur India CSR head said that in 2017-18, the company saw 25 percent increase in area under medicinal herbs cultivation, which was over 5,000 acres across 19 states. The company works with nearly 800 farmers, covering more than 3500 acres, according to a company spokesperson.

Acharya Balkrishna, CEO of Patanjali said that the company is also “helping farmers grow herbs on 40,000 acre”. Shatavari, Chirayata and Kutki are on top of his list of best earners.

In addition, the Indian Institute of Integrative Medicine in Jammu and Kashmir also promotes aromatic plants such as rosemary, lavender etc. Ram Vishwakarma, Director of the institute said, “Demand for oils from these herbs is coming from domestic firms dealing in perfumery & cosmetics”.

To conclude, growing medicinal or aromatic plants is just like growing other crops, all you need to do is a little research before you start with it.

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