A forum on framing the Action Plan for “Carbon Neutral Wayanad” was inaugurated by Dr.T.M.Thomas Issac, Minister of Finance, Government of Kerala at the MSSRF Community Agrobiodiversity Centre (CAbC), Wayanad, Kerala, on October 29, 2017. The context of earlier discussions was recalled by Shri. Ajith Mathai. There was a panel discussion on developing market value chain for Wayanad shade coffee -problems and prospects. Dr. N.Anil Kumar, Senior Director, MSSRF welcomed the gathering while Prof. M.K.Prasad chaired the function.
Speaking on the occasion, Dr Issac said carbon neutrality in Wayanad was made possible by the scientific intervention and implementation of methodologies, including afforestration of indigenous trees species,which prove to be helpful in carbon sequestration. This was particularly so in shade coffee ecosystem, helping conserve and improve the natural biodiversity of the ecosystem. Carbon neutrality itself should emerge as a new brand for Wayanad Coffee in the market, he said.
While farmers were getting lower prices for their produce, branding of the produce would help community fetch higher price in the market, said Dr Isaac.
Shri. C.K. Saseendran, MLA, Kalpetta, Dr.S.C.Joshi IFS (Rtd.),Chairman, Kerala State Biodiversity Board, Shri.Balagopal IAS, (Rtd.),Shri. Karuthamani, Deputy Director, Coffee Research Station, Smt.Shajna, Assistant Conservator, Social Forestry, Shri. Jayakumar Thanal, Shri.David Hogg, Chief Sustainability Officer, Nandi Foundation, Shri. P.K.Mayan Mohammed, Managing Director, The Western India Plywoods Ltd, Dr. V.Balakrishnan, Head, CAbC MSSRF, Wayanad and Dr.G.N.Hariharan, Director-Biotechnology, MSSRF spoke on the occasion. People’s representatives, farmer representatives, planters, coffee traders, producer companies, NGOS and scientists participated in the programme.