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Strake holder consultation Inaguration of Distillation Unit
Inaguration of Distillation Unit
Tokma (Hyptis suaveolens) Tokma (Hyptis suaveolens)
Tokma (Hyptis suaveolens)
Velvet Beans Velvet Beans
 	Flavoring in ice-cream
Distillation Unit at Machhmara under PPP

NTFP Centre of Excellence (NCE) has been created by the Govt of Tripura under Tripura JICA Project, inter alia, with the objective of promoting and facilitating NTFP activities as a means of livelihood for the masses on a sustainable basis, dissemination of technology information and development of enterprise and to assist in marketing of NTFP. Towards the objective of value addition and marketing of NTFP as a sustainable income generating activity, Community Common Facility Centres (CCFCs) are set up at various locations in Tripura under Tripura JICA Project. A distillation unit has been set up at Machhmara for value addition of Medicinal & Aromatic Plants (MAPs) especially Sugandhamantri (Homalomena aromatica), locally called Gandhaki, which has a promising market in perfumery industry and elsewhere.

Tripura’s forests and homesteads abound in Sugandhamantri plants which are being collected and sold to traders by JFMC members and others at a very low price, which could have otherwise fetched handsome income to the villagers with a minimum amount of value addition. Under Tripura JICA Project, a workshed building has been constructed at Machhmara, North Tripura and machinery has been procured from Barabanki (UP), which have been commissioned. Since the requisite expertise in running the distillation plant and trade of this NTFP is not available with the local people or the Forest Department, it had become essential to involve expert agencies from the private sector, at least till the time local expertise is developed.

A meeting of representatives from the 41 JFMCs under Pecharthal Range of Kanchanpur Division, wherefrom the major collection of the plant takes place, was convened on 30 August 2014 under the chairmanship of Director, NTFP Centre of Excellence, Agartala. In the said meeting the matter was discussed in details with the stakeholders and an 11-Member Plant-level Working Committee was constituted under the Chairmanship of Range Officer, Pecharthal for overall guidance and monitoring of the CCFC. The meeting was attended by DFO Kanchanpur, Regional Director (CFLE) (Chief Technical Advisor, NCE) and an expert from the field of Sugandhamantri trade, besides JFMC representatives. A proposal was approved by the Government of Tripura for ensuring proper running of the CCFC Machhmara with involvement of experts from private sector in management, operation and guarantee of buy back at assured price of the products by entering into a Management Contract with a party selected through open competitive bidding.

The Management Contract, signed between the NCE and the selected private party, covers running of the CCFC at Machhmara and buying of sugandhamantri collected from erstwhile Kanchanpur and Kailashahar Divisions. The unit was inaugurated by Principal Secretary (Forests, Animal Resources, Agriculture etc) on 26 March 2015 and the operator has started functioning after obtaining requisite licences.

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