(LANKAPUVATH | COLOMBO) – The Department of Agriculture states that the groundnut crop, which is cultivated as a food crop, has now exceeded the national requirement and has recorded a harvest of double the requirement.
The Minister of Agriculture Mahinda Amaraweera has inquired about the cultivation of groundnut in Sri Lanka during a recent discussion with the crop leaders appointed for the promotion of food crops grown in the country.
Deputy Director of Crop Leader on Peanut Cultivation SNP Weerakoon said the country’s annual requirement of groundnut is 30,000 metric tons. However, by the end of 2021, the harvest of groundnut has exceeded 64,000 MT.
The Lanka Jumbo, a new variety of peanut introduced by the Department of Agriculture has made it possible to even suspend the peanuts imports. The most imported variety is the ‘jumbo peanuts’ which have exceptionally large plump kernels.
Due to the use of Lanka Jumbo variety for ‘jumbo peanuts’ production currently, it has been possible to save a large amount of money drawn to foreign countries, the officials noted.
The Minister instructed the officials of the Department of Agriculture to take steps to promote the related products by utilizing the extra harvest of peanuts.
The Minister said that a program to produce peanut oil and peanut butter which is especially beneficial to the health should be started and steps should be taken to further expand peanut cultivation.
The Minister of Agriculture Mahinda Amaraweera said that the farmers should be encouraged to pay more attention to the cultivation of groundnut as well as other such crops which can be grown without the use of chemical fertilizers or pesticides.