Jute is one of the important commercial crops of the country and provides livelihood security to about 4.0 million farm families in the states of West Bengal, Bihar, Assam and Odisha. It is also estimated that the jute industry provides employment to about 3.7 lakh workers in organized mills and also in the allied sectors in the eastern part of the country. Jute has contributed Rs. 7003 crore INR to India’s value of output from agriculture during 2015-16 which is 0.4 percent of the total value of output from agriculture. About 74% of the raw jute is produced in West Bengal which also contributes to 70% of the jute area in the country followed by Bihar, Assam and Odisha
All India Network Project on Jute and Allied Fibres (AINPJAF) is contributing significantly in strengthening the jute and allied fibre research of the country. The new varieties developed and released through this project have certainly contributed in improving the yield as well as the fibre quality of JAF crops. The rigorous screening of JAF germplasm in the AINPJAF centres against disease and insect pest has led to identification of promising ones possessing significant tolerance / resistance against disease and insect pest and are being used in the breeding programme. The soil test based fertilizer prescription equations validated at different AINP centres has rationalized the fertilizer doses under different soil conditions. Identification of dominant weed species has contributed significantly in developing sound weed management schedules for jute and mesta. The planting variables, nutrient and irrigation schedules of flax have been fine tuned for West Bengal, Assam and Uttar Pradesh. Profitable intercrop components for sisal had been identified for Odisha and the INM schedule for the crop had also been developed. Many of the improved technologies are being successfully demonstrated in famers’ fields through the TSP programme.