The flourishing district of Rewa derives its name from the sacrosanct Rewa River (Narmada). Known to be an important agricultural hub of Madhya Pradesh, this district produces some of the finest quality maize, paddy, soybean, wheat, pulses, onion, coriander, linseed, tomato, potato, mango, guava and medicinal herbs and spices like turmeric and ashwagandha.
As this district is rich in mineral resources, limestone and coal, has a unique combination of deep black soils, medium deep black soils and mixed red and black soils and has hot summers, cool winters and decent rainfall in the monsoon, the agricultural produce is consistently good throughout the year.
Rewa’s most famous cash crop is turmeric that is cultivated by small and marginal farmers using the highly innovative vertical farming technique. This district in particular has benefited from the pro – farmer and progressive schemes and subsidies of the state and central government resulting in a significant rise in revenue each financial year. As farmers rely heavily on organic, natural and zero farming, the turmeric in this district has a heady aroma, a vibrant colour, high curcumin content (average is 5 percent) and oleoresin content (average is 14 – 16 percent).
It is estimated that native and high – yielding varieties of turmeric (Curcuma longa L.) are the most popular among farmers based on their average weight of primary and secondary rhizomes, yield per plant and rhizome yield.
Rewa turmeric is widely used in the cosmetic, pharmaceutical and food industry because of its characteristic flavour and fragrance.
In recent years, farmers have been encouraged to grow the endangered black turmeric (Curcuma Caesia) that has immense medicinal, healing and nutritional properties and fetches an astronomical price in domestic and international markets.
Written by Lakshmi Subramanian
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