By Our Correspondent,Urlabari, Feb. 11: Farmers of Kanepokhari Rural Municipality in Morang district are now busy preparing gundruk.
Gundruk is a fermented leafy green vegetables originated in Nepal.
In the policy and programme of the fiscal year 2022/23, the rural municipality had allocated a budget of Rs. 750,000 to run the programme 'Pass mother's skills on children, organic gundruk to Morang'.
Under the same programme, 18 farmers of the rural municipality planted mustard in 122 katthas of their land to produce gundruk.
Farmers who planted mustard seeds in the first week of November now have fermented the mustard leaves in pots and dried them in the sun to make gundruk.
The rural municipality is going to buy the gundruk produced by the farmers at the rate of Rs. 1,000 per kg.
Chairman of Kanepokhari Rural Municipality Rajmati Ingnam said, “After reading the statistics in the newspaper that even the traditional gundruk, which is eaten only by Nepalis in the world, comes from China, we have launched this programme to discourage the import of gundruk. Since it was the first time, we got to learn something new.”
If mustard is planted in the month of October in an empty field, it will be possible to harvest up to three times in one season, she said, adding that they will be involved for producing gundruk in a more systematic way from next year.
Farmers who produce gundruk commercially are also encouraged by the programme.
Bhagwati Baral of Mainabari in Kanepokhari-2, said that she prepared gundruk by growing mustard in around two katthas of land.
“It was very good, but there was a problem to drying them due to fog. If the drying system is good, it is possible to prepare the gundruk two or three times in a season,” she said.
She said she would produce around 8 to 10 kg of gundruk this year.
Bimala Raya of the same village had grown mustard in four katthas of land.
“The weather has been good. I think I can make as much as 15 kgs gundruk,” she said.
The rural municipality provided plowing expenses, organic fertilisers and seeds to the farmers who grow mustard to make gundruk.
Generally, it takes 90 to 95 days for mustard to grow. For gundruk, green leaves can be picked and dried in 30 to 35 days.
Santosh Ghimire, chief administrative officer of the rural municipality, said, “This year, our farmers were able to pick greens and make gundruk only once.
However, starting from next year, arrangements will be made to pick greens three times a season to prepare gundruk.”