Historically, the jackfruit has always enjoyed the status of a holy tree in Sri Lanka. Named baat gasa or ‘rice tree’ it is said to have saved Lankans from hunger in a crisis. Jackfruit has social and religious connotations in Sri Lanka too. In recent years it is the economic significance of jackfruit that has grown. Since the past 10 years HORDI, funded by the International Centre for Underutilized Crops (ICUC), has trained free of cost, street vendors, housewives and entrepreneurs in minimal processing, dehydration, and bottling technologies.

In 2003, when Hungund taluk in the Bagalkot district of Karnataka was hit by a severe drought, farmers did not have to buy food grain from the market. Nearly 90 per cent of them had built bunds and conserved topsoil using traditional techniques of drought-proofing which have their roots in this district.

After a long and herculean struggle, the people of Kasaragod district succeeded in getting the Kerala government to

In days of yore, the Mararikulam brinjal was much favoured by the royal families of Travancore and Amabalapuzha in Kerala. Slender, long and green, this variety has been grown in Mararikulam on the Kerala coast for centuries. The village would supply its choicest brinjals to royalty.

Dr Jaikumaran, a professor at the Kerala Agriculture University (KAU), has been building a Food Security Army (FSA)

THE long-neglected and lowly jackfruit is finally finding its rightful place in the market

The Annam festival held in the last week of December 2008, in Thiruvananthapuram is the first event of its kind. It is a brave attempt to bring focus to the growing concern over the present food habits in Kerala and the deleterious effects they are having on public health.

A creative partnership between a farmer and a scientist has resulted in the creation of a disease tolerant bee strain that promises to revive bee-keeping in south Karnataka, Goa and Kerala. The bee strain is tolerant to the dreadedviral disease, Thai Sac Brood (TSB). The bees are also much more productive and focused in producing honey. Bee-keeping in south India began flagging in 1992. TSB struck that year. It first hit the Koynadu bees in the Dakshina Kannada district of Karnataka. In the span of two years, the virus wiped out entire colonies of bees in many parts of southern India.

Eleven years ago, Pathampara, a 90-minute drive from Kannur, made headlines when it stopped petitioning the government for electricity and instead began generating its own power from a very small facility using the flow of a local stream to run a turbine.

a division Bench of Kerala High Court has once again directed the state government to conduct another epidemiological study in the cashew plantation areas in Kerala and trace out the factors responsible for health problems in areas such as Padre and Cheemeni in Kasaragod district.