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Stevia Agrotechnology 1.0 Product and its applications Stevia (Stevia rebaudiana Bertoni) is an incredibly sweet herb.

It contains a sweetener namely, stevioside nearly 300 times sweeter than sugar. Stevia is often referred to as the "sweetest plant of the world". The f have a nice liquorice taste. Stevia is a calorie- free, cholesterol-free sugar alternative. Many different uses are already well-known: as table sugar, in soft drinks, pastry, candy, jam, chocolates, biscuits, beverages, tobacco products, yoghurt, chewing gum, sorbets and diabetic medicines. The dried leaves of stevia are a times sweeter than sugar. The documented properties of stevia are antibacterial, anti fungal, anti-inflamm microbial, anti-viral, anti-yeast, cardio tonic, diuretic, hypoglycaemic, hypotensive, vasodilator and henc diabetic people. Stevia originated in the northern regions of South America but now its cultivation has be popular worldwide. The part of the plant that is above the ground is harvested, 5 times a year, up to 6 yea commercial use. The roots remain in place and the plant regenerates again. 2.0 Market Potential

Stevia is poised for major growth in the Indian cash crop market as domestic and export demand is estim 2008) to leap by 300% over the next three years. India tops the diabetic population with 30 million patien expected to increase to 80 million in 2025. China ranks second in diabetic population followed by the US Currently Japan has been using Stevia on large scale.

Worldwide, 32,000 hectares are covered under stevia cultivation, of which China has a major chunk of 75 Indian farmers have also started taking up stevia cultivation following the large demand for diabetic mark .The country's total annual production is currently nearly 600 tonnes. The climatic conditions in most par are quite favourable for stevia cultivation. 3.0 Basis and Presumption a) The agricultural land and related infrastructure is available with the entrepreneur.

b) Provision has been made for additional investment on drip irrigation which can be saved if good irriga facilities are existing. c) Prices are calculated as per the prevailing market rates. d) The yields depend on proper implementation of package of practices. e) Economics of cultivation greatly improves on scale of operation.

f) This activity provides tax-free high returns. Additionally a number of government support schemes are Latest provisions need to be checked up. g) Market for medicinal plants is volatile and economics may vary from time to time. 4.0 Agri practices 4.1 Land Land is ploughed and cultivated twice to prepare a fairly smooth surface. 4.2 Transplants

Transplants from cuttings are superior though cost makes it prohibitive. Stevia is propagated from seed in placed in greenhouse for period of 7- 8 weeks. 4.3 Planting

Depending on different climatic conditions stevia is cultivable throughout the year except for times when extremely hot or cold. Stevia plug plants are planted into the field on 53 cm or 61 cm row spacing with a density in the order of 100,000 plants per hectare. 4.4 Fertilization The plant has low nutrient requirements; however a soil test should be conducted. 4.5 Irrigation

Normally, the stevia plant requires frequent, shallow irrigation. Generally, one applies irrigation if the ste drooping at least once per week. 4.6 Weed control This crop also requires hand hoeing and weeding. 4.7 Pest control

Insect pest pressures other than cutworm are minimal. Septoria disease can cause considerable damage to crop. Animals like the sweet taste of Stevia. 4.8 Harvesting

Time of harvesting depends on land, variety and growing season. Generally it can be scheduled when pla 60 cm in height. Shorter days induce flowering. The part of the plant that is above the ground is harvested year, up to 6 years of age for commercial use. The roots remain in place and the plant regenerates again. yield of biomass and stevioside quality & quantity are best just prior to flowering. The plant also tolerate temperatures. 5.0 Post harvest operations 5.1 Drying Drying of the woody stems plus the soft green leaf material is completed immediately after harvesting uti drying wagon or a kiln. Depending on weather conditions and density of loading, it generally takes 24 to dry stevia at 40C to 50C. 5.2 Threshing

Immediately following drying, dry stevia leaves are separated from the stem through a thresher/separator leaf portions tend to be equally represented at 6,000 kg/ha each. 6.0 Yield 20 t green or 6 t dry leaves per ha. 7.0 Economics of stevia cultivation per hectare land (Rs.) First year Green Manuring Compost 12 trolleys @ Rs. 900 each Vermicompost 2000 kg @ Rs. 7/ kg Land preparation + bed raising Drip irrigation 8,000 10,800 14,000 9,000 80,000 Second year onwards -. 9,000 ----

Planting material 75,000 plants @ Rs. 4 each Sowing Thresher Weeding Irrigation & supervision Harvesting & drying Packing, transportation & miscellaneous Total Cost Total Output 5,000 kg dry leaves @ Rs. 120/ kg Net Profit

3,00,000 -5,200 60,000 9,000 9,000 17,000 35,000. --9,000 9,000 18,000 35,000

5,77,000 80,000 6,00,000 6,00,000 23,000 5,20,000

8.0 Addresses of Some Dealers in Medicinal plants/ Planting Material 1. Tropical Forest Research Institute Mandla Road, Jabalpur (M.P.) 2. Cedmap, 60, Jail Road, Jahangirabad, Bhopal (M.P.) 3. KRD Musli Farm,10/47, Station Road, Rau, Indore-453331 (M.P.) 4.Mittal Musli Farm and Research Centre, Jamod, Jalgaon (Maharashtra) 4. Regional Research Laboratory Jorhat, (Assam) 5. Jeevan Herbs & Agro Farms 178,Keshav Ganj, Sagar (M.P.) 6. SSSBiotic.com C/o biosourcing.com (P) Ltd. A-41, Janpath, Ashoknagar Bhubaneswar (Orissa) 7. Kasiraj Exports, 37, Santhai Road, Tuticorin (TN) 8. A.Y. Agritec Private Limited 16-7-382/18, Azampura Masjid, Hyderabad (A.P.) Contact for more information Information Manager TIMEIS Project E-mail: timeis@ficci.com