Bihar takes a fresh leap in the agriculture industry with the entry of a new vegetable named ‘Hop Shoots’. Amresh Singh, 38, a farmer has started its cultivation on a trial basis in Bihar’s Aurangabad district. The crop is estimated to be sold at around a whooping cost of one lakh per kilogram.
An Intermediate graduate from Hazaribagh’s St. Columbus College, 2012, Amresh is the first farmer to start hop-shoot cultivation on 6000 sq. feet of land.
The cultivation of ‘hop-shoots’ (humulus-lupulus) is going on under the direction of agricultural scientist Dr. Lal of the Indian Vegetable Research Institute at Varanasi.
Farming of this vegetable is usually done in the European countries.
Plantation of Hop-shoots in India was first done in Himachal Pradesh. It proved to be a failure because of its high price.
As stated in a report on ‘New Indian Express’, Mr. Amresh said, “The vegetable has the potential to increase farmers’ income by ten times as it costs 850 pounds in the international market which is about Rs. 85000 in the Indian market.”
According to him there are various uses of this vegetable, the fruit, flower, and stem of hop-shoots are all used in beverage making, beer making and for medicinal needs like in making antibiotics. “The stem of this vegetable is useful in producing a medicine for the treatment of Tuberculosis(TB). Other benefits include, humulones and lupulones found in the shoots of the crop can kill cancer cells. The vegetable also contains a high level of antioxidants, and thus is beneficial in skin gleaming and anti-aging products.”
He brought the vegetable’s saplings from the Indian Vegetable Research Institute at Varanasi and planted it two months ago. “The delightful part is that more than 3/5th of its cultivation has happened successfully till now.”
As for Amresh, other than the cultivation of this rare crop he also farms many other medicinal and aromatic plants. He has taken the risk of experimenting with the cultivation of hop-shoot in Bihar and aspires to set an example for other farmers.