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Indian Economy

Indian Coir Industry

  • 07 May 2022
  • 6 min read

For Prelims: Coir, MSME, Eco mark, Initiatives related to Coir

For Mains: Mobilization of Resources, Status of Coir Industry and its Significance

Why in News?

The Ministry of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises inaugurated the ‘Enterprise India National Coir Conclave 2022’ at Coimbatore, Tamil Nadu.

  • The event is being organized with the idea of bringing about a co-ordinated effort between the State and Central Governments to promote production of coir and coir products and to identify new areas of application of coir.
  • A ‘Run for Coir’ is also being organized on 6th may, 2022 to promote the use of coir, as a natural, degradable, eco-friendly product. More than a thousand people, including dignitaries, college students and the general public are expected to participate in the run.

What is Coir?

  • It is a material found in nature; a hearty byproduct of coconuts produced in abundance by coconut palms.
  • It is the naturally occurring fibrous material found on the outside of coconut husks that is naturally processed for use.
  • Coir has been used for centuries by navigators in rope form for rigging and ship cables.
  • Today, coir is used to create an assortment of products, from rugs and doormats to plant pots and hanging basket liners, to cultivation-enhancing gardening material and blankets used for erosion control. Some potting mix products also include coir.

What is the Status of Coir Industry in India?

  • Coir Board was set up under the Coir Industry Act, 1953 by the Government of India for the overall sustainable development of coir industry in the Country.
  • The functions of the Board are undertaking, assisting and encouraging scientific, technological and economic research, modernization, quality improvement, human resource development, market promotion and welfare of all those who are engaged in this industry.
  • The functions mandated under the Coir Industry Act are carried out by Coir Board under the various Schemes/Programmes, including research and development activities, training programmes, extending financial support for setting up of coir units, domestic as well as export market development, welfare measures to the workers etc.

What is its Significance?

  • Employment:
    • The Coir industry provides employment to more than 7 lakh people in the rural areas of the coconut growing states.
      • More interestingly, 80% of these artisans are women but its production has so far been confined to the southern coconut producing States/UTs in the country.
  • Export:
    • The export of Coir and Coir products from India during the year 2020-21 registered an all-time high record of Rs.3778.98 crores with an increase of over Rs.1021 crores from the previous year.
  • Domestic Consumption:
    • Over 50% of the coir fiber produced annually throughout the world is consumed mainly in India.
    • The growing affinity towards environmentally friendly products has helped coir and coir products in domestic as well as foreign markets.
  • Eco-friendly:
    • Coir Products are ecofriendly in nature and gained “Eco Mark certification by the Ministry of Environment and Forests, Govt. Of India.
    • Coir products save the environment and help to reverse Global Warming.
    • New end use applications of coir like the use of Coir Geotextiles for preventing soil erosion, conversion of Coir Pith into a valuable bio- fertilizer and soil conditioner and Coir Garden articles have gained popularity in India and abroad.

What are some Indian Initiatives Related to Coir?

  • Coir Geo Textile:
    • Coir Geotextile is naturally resistant to rot, mold and moisture, and free from any microbial attack hence it needs no chemical treatment.
  • Coir Udyami Yojana:
    • Coir Udyami Yojana is a credit linked subsidy scheme for setting up of coir units with project cost up to Rs.10 lakhs plus one cycle of working capital, which shall not exceed 25% of the project cost. The scheme is being implemented by the Coir Board.
  • Coir Vikas Yojana:
    • The scheme facilitates development of domestic and export markets, skill development and training, empowerment of women, employment/entrepreneurship creation and development, enhanced raw material utilization, trade related services, welfare activities for the coir workers, etc.
    • This is undertaken through the following 6 schemes:
      • Skill Upgradation and Mahlia Coir Yojana
      • Export Market Promotion (EMP)
      • Development of Production Infrastructure (DPI)
      • Domestic Market Promotion (DMP)
      • Trade and Industry Related Functional Support Services (TIRFSS)
      • Welfare Measure (Group Personal Accident Insurance Scheme)

Way Forward

  • Coir has immense potential and can really play an instrumental role in enhancing exports and adding to MSME’s share in GDP (Gross Domestic Product) of the country.
  • Coir is a good example of ‘waste to wealth’, which provides a sustainable solution, as it is eco-friendly and helps conservation of water and soil.

Source: PIB

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