Arka Vegetable Special (Micronutrient Formulation) performance in ‘Udupi Mattu Gulla,’ a Geographical Indication (GI) Brinjal
Udupi Mattu Gulla, or Udupi Matti Gulla, is a local selection of green round brinjal grown in and around the village of Matti (also called Mattu) in Udupi since long. This brinjal, which enjoys the Geographical Indication (GI) tag, is sought after because of its unique taste. Nearly 200 farmers grow this brinjal on about 250 acres of land in Mattu and its surrounding hamlets such as Kopla, Kaipunjal, Uliyargoli and Pangala. Mr. Mattu Laxman a progressive farmer cum manager of Mattu Gulla Belegarara Sanga (Mattu Gulla growers’ society), Katapadi PO, Mattu Village, Udupi Taluk of Udupi District raised one acre of Udupi Mattu Gulla brinjal in his field during rabi season 2018-19. After knowing the benefits of Arka Vegetable Special (micronutrient formulation) from the demonstrations conducted at Mattu by ICAR- IIHR scientists (Dr. D. Kalaivanan and Dr. P.VR. Reddy) and staff of KVK, Brahmavar under Bhoo Samrudhi Project, Mr Mattu Laxman interacted with Scientists of IIHR during the demonstrations and collected five kg of Arka Vegetable Special from ICAR- IIHR. He transplanted the seedlings of Mattu Gulla Brinjal in the month of October 2018 at a distance of two and half feet (75cm) between plants and more than 3 feet (100 cm) between the rows. He followed standard package of practices recommended by ICAR-IIHR. To improve the yield of mattu gulla, the recommended dosage of foliar application of Arka Vegetable Special @ 75 grams in 15 liters of water (5 grams per litre) along with 1 shampoo sachet and 2 medium sized lemons has been practiced for four times. Mr. Mattu Laxman was constantly in touch with IIHR scientists (Dr.D.Kalaivanan, Dr.P.V.R.Reddy and Dr P.C.Tripathi) who visited his field regularly under Bhoo Samrudhi Project.
The farmer realized very good fruit yield (14.0 t/ac) in mattu gulla and could sell the produce @ Rs 3000 per sack (about 50 kg) or Rs 60 per kg in nearby market. He was very happy with the performance of Arka Vegetable Special, Neem and Pongamia soap formulations in terms of better fruit size, fruit weight, fruit colour and shining, less pest and disease incidence, yield and net returns. He earned a net profit of Rs 7, 20,000 for five to six months crop duration and very much satisfied. The farmer expressed happiness that he has got Rs 140,000 as additional profit compared to without vegetable special spray (11.5 t/ac and net profit of Rs 5, 80,000) due to better fruit setting, marketable fruit size, fruit colour and shining, fruit weight and extended crop duration. He also opined that Arka Vegetable Special can give continuous flowering and fruiting. Further, the farmer opined that as the Vegetable Special helps in getting early fruiting, green colour fruits with light green stripes, which are very much preferred in the local markets as well as markets of Bengaluru and Mumbai and fetches higher price. It also helps in retaining more number of flowers, thus increase in the fruit set leading to higher yield. Once he started spraying vegetable special in his field, neighboring mattu gulla growers also came to know about this micronutrient formulation and performance which he was used in the field. He has also motivated other farmer members of Mattu Gulla Belegarara Sanga (Mattu Gulla growers’ society) of mattu village and neighbouring villages to use this product which was developed by ICAR-IIHR for getting better yield and net profit in Udupi Mattu Gulla Brinjal.