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Sheep rearing important source of livelihood in Himachal

Sheep rearing important source of livelihood in Himachal

Shimla, Feb 26 (SocialNews.XYZ) Sheep rearing in Himachal Pradesh is an important source of livelihood for a large percentage of small and marginal farmers mainly settled in tribal areas, an official said on Sunday.

Rampur Bushari and Gaddi breeds are famous for indigenous carpet wool production in the country.


Some private agencies are investing in organic certification and standards like responsible wool standards of the Himachali wool to cater to a small market in the West.

As per livestock census of 2019, the sheep population in the state is 7,91,345, including 72,821 of exotic breeds.

Being a reliable source of income to the shepherds through the sale of wool, animals, meat, manure, milk, and skin, the Himachal Pradesh State Wool Federation, an apex cooperative institution, is playing a major role in strengthening the pastoralists with an aim to save wool growers from exploitation by middlemen and traders.

Besides providing the technical and mechanical sheep shearing facilities to the breeders, the federation is also maintaining a revolving fund of Rs 133.39 crore for the procurement of wool from them.

The procurement rate ranges from 125 to 150 metric tons, depending upon the market and the breeders are provided on-the-spot payment.

A spokesperson for the wool federation said the total wool production in the state is 15.50 lakh kg, which comes to an average of around 1.9 kg per sheep.

The rate of white wool ranges from Rs 34.10 to Rs 71.50 per kg and for black wool from Rs 25.50 to Rs 45 per kg. Also, the federation provides 20 per cent higher rates in case of white crossbred wool in order to motivate breeders to adopt a cross-breeding programme and keep pace with the demand of the industry for apparel grade wool, said the spokesperson.

The federation is also providing mechanical sheep shearing facilities at the subsidised rates.

Jai Singh, a progressive sheep breeder from Deol village in Holi in Chamba district, said he sells about 900 to 1,000 kg of crossbred wool to the federation at the rate of Rs 85.80 per kg. He has a flock of 800 sheep.

Mohinder Thakur, another sheep breeder from Chotta-Bhangal in Kangra district, said he migrates to Ramshehar near Nalagarh in winters with his flock of about 300 sheep.

Source: IANS

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Sheep rearing important source of livelihood in Himachal

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