Colombo (LNW): The Sour (Ambul) Banana and TEJC Mango Cultivation Projects in Jaffna initiated under the Agriculture Sector Modernisation Project by the Agriculture Ministry has reportedly reached success.
Currently, Sour bananas cover 200 acres, and TEJC mangoes span 500 acres, both cultivated for export. Collaborating with the Rajanganaya Sour Banana Project, weekly exports of 10,000 kg of sour bananas to Dubai are underway.
On Sunday (15), Agriculture Minister Mahinda Amaraweera together with MP Angajan Ramanathan assessed the progress of these ventures.
The TEJC Mango Project occupies 500 acres in the Elutumattuwal area of Chavakachcheri, while 200 acres are dedicated to sour banana farming in Jaffna’s agricultural zone, which also houses a sour banana processing centre in the Nilavarei area.
Amaraweera expressed satisfaction at the projects’ outcomes and highlighted plans to expand them using high-density cultivation to maximise yield.
Noting Jaffna’s low paddy yield, he emphasised the ministry’s commitment to offering farmers the necessary technology, cultivation methods, and facilities to shift to more lucrative crops.
Both the mango and banana initiatives have turned into significant foreign currency earners for Sri Lanka, with an emphasis on maintaining high-quality standards.
Sour banana farming in Jaffna will grow by another 400 acres, and while the TEJC mango project is adequately sized for the imminent large harvest, Amaraweera cautioned against excessive mango plantations that could deflate market demand.
The ministry is also promoting the cultivation of other export-worthy crops.