Bringing ’forgotten food’ back to the plate and giving a stimulus to its consumption so as to ensure nutritional security besides helping farmers — this was the aim when RC Mysore West, RID 3181, organised a two-day ‘Roots and Tubers Mela’ in Mysuru recently.
The event, partnered with Sahaja Samruddha that promotes sustainable agriculture, had farmers from across the state showcasing varieties of tubers and roots “most of which look alike but have different nutritional elements,” says club secretary Dinesh Kumar D K. Elephant foot yam, fresho yam, lesser yam to name a few may sound familiar but there are a hundred whose names are as exotic as their shape and size, he adds.
There are scores of varieties like purple yam which is used in ice creams and cakes, though many varieties have not yet been documented, says Krishanaprasad of Sahaja Samruddha, adding, ‘’certain tubers and roots can be a source of food security at the household level and our intention is to promote their cultivation in the backyard so as to ensure adequate nutrition for the local populace.”
Mysore Maharaj Yaduveer Krishnadatta Chamaraja Wadiyar inaugurated the mela. Tubers and roots has many benefits as they can sustain in water-stressed regions, did not require chemical fertilisers and pesticides. They are beneficial to the farmers as the input cost is next to negligible while ensuring food security, he said.
The event saw over 15,000 visitors and more than ₹12 lakh turnover.
RC Mysore West president Dr Ragavendra Prasad, PDGs Joseph Mathew, R Krishna and G K Balakrishna were present during the inaugural.