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Govt to start largescale breeding of Black Bengal goat

State government is going ahead with its plan to start largescale breeding of Black Bengal goat.

Statesman News Service | Kolkata |

The West Bengal Comprehensive Area Development Corporation (WBCADC), which is under state panchayat and rural development department, has come up with the idea to scale up meat production in the state.

This variety of goat meat, which is locally known as kochi pathar mangsho, forms Bengalis’ favourite dish. It is much sought after in the state and outside.

The administrative secretary of the West Bengal Comprehensive Area Development Corporation informed The Statesman that the Black Bengal goat is hardly found in the markets in the state nowadays and the market is flooded with large species like the Ludhiana breed and other varieties from Uttar Pradesh, Punjab, Haryana and Bihar. Meats of those varieties, known as rewaji khasi, contain excessive fat and are less tasty compared to Black Bengal goat species.

“Still there is a huge demand for kochi pantha among the meat lovers. This is evident from long queue at the Gopal Panthas famous meat shop at Bowbazar in Kolkata. During the Durga Puja, the WBCADC has set up a stall at Bagbazar Rajaballavpur. In only four days, the sales figures have touched Rs 2,70,000. After this successful trial, we are now introducing kochi panthar mangsho in the Ahare Bangla stall,” he added.

The official further added that under the Rastriya Krishi Vikash Yojona (RKVY) for the financial year 2019-2020, about 260 families will be given 10 female and one male Bengal black goats each . The ratio will be 3:1. Each goat will be sold for around Rs 2,000 in the markets and the families can earn upto Rs.40,000 to Rs.60,000 per year.

“At present, the farming of Bengal black goat will start at Sonamukhi in Bankura, Ayodhya Hills in Purulia and Haringhata. The black meat farming is set to bring a significant socio economic changes in the tribal-infested Jangalmahal areas of South Bengal districts,”he added.

A special type of grass will be cultivated on the lands of these areas along with leaves of banyan trees, which are favourite fodder of Black Bengal goats.

The meat of these Bengal black goats will be sold through special franchisee tender lamb meat outlets, run by the self help groups. Slowly over the years, the farming will increase and the WBCADC plans to provide meat at stalls in every blocks throughout the state.

The female goat becomes pregnant thrice a year and every time gives birth to two to four goats. Not only the meat of the Black Bengal goat is tasty but it is also nutritious. Its skin is also much in demand.

The revival of Black Bengal goat farming, which has almost stopped these days, will play a very important role in reducing unemployment and poverty in rural Bengal. It will also increase meat, milk and skin production and can also fetch valuable foreign currency in future due to its worldwide demand. The price of meat will also come down from Rs 600 per kilogram at present.

Due to its absence in the market these days, many people have stopped consuming the rewazi khashi red meat. But with the state government’s move, Bengal’s favourite vaiety will become available in the market. Soon mouthwatering kochi panthar jhol and kosha manghso will make a comeback in the Bengali cuisine.