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Introduction > Origin And Distribution > Area and Production > Uses And Nutritive Value >


Ikisan - History of bengalgram

Introduction

  • The ancient wisdom of the Indians about the value of pulses in human nutrition is perhaps, responsible to a extent for the wide spread vegetarianism in our country.
  • The staple pulse component in combination with cereals in our diet (for example,dalroti and and dal-chawal) eminates from this recognition, Modern nutritionists also substantiates that this combination is superior to either pulse or cereal alone.
  • Our ancestors were also wise to the value of pulse crops in maintaining and improving the soil fertility, not only by raising legumes for grain but also for green manuring.
  • During the last few decades, there has been a spurt in consumption of fertilisers as a result of which, pulse production has been pushed aside. However, it is now considered for too costly to apply desired levels of factory-produced fertilisers to non-leguminous crops.
  • In times to come, there will naturally be a greater dependence on nitrogen fixed by legumes because of the declining availability of petrolium by-products which constitute the raw materials for artificial fertilisers.
  • More and more countries especially in semi-arid tropics are now showing growing awareness of the inevitability of resorting to exploitative farming practices based on legume-non-legume companion cropping or sequential cropping.
  • Data reveal that as much as 20 to 60kg N per hectare may be left by these legumes for the subsequent crop, besides meeting their own requirements.
  • We, in this country, are fortunate in having some of these systems already under practice but they need to be standardised and further improved.
  • Chickpea is generally grown on conserved moisture during the dry season of the year. Throught most of the Indian sub continent, desi types are grown as an autumn sown winter crop.
  • As a result of this reliance on conserved moisture, production is erratic. Low mangement inputs such as fertilization, pest control and weed control, are the general rule.

Local Names

    • Hindi - Chana
    • Assamee - Butmah
    • Bengali - Chola
    • Oriya - Bool
    • Telugu - Sanagalu
    • Tamil - Kadalai
    • Malayalam - Kadalai
    • Kannada - Kadale
    • Marathi - Harbara
    • Gujrati - Chana
  • Gram is the most important pulse crops grown in India, ranking fourth among the grain crops in acreage and production.
  • It occupies over 10 million hectares yielding about 5.4 lakh tons of grain annually in India.
  • The main producing areas are the upper basins of the Ganges, Punjab, Uttar Pradesh and Bihar and the adjoining tracts of Central India, Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh and Maharashtra.
  • Gram is not an important pulse crop in South India. Total area of gram in South India is 2 lakhs hectares with a production of 94 thousand tons and thus the average yield is very low.

 
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Ikisan - Origin and distribution of bengalgram

Origin And Geographical Distribution

  • Chanaka (Cicer arietinum L.) in the Sanskrit literature shows that the cultivation of this pulse has been in vogue in India since very ancient times.
  • According to Vavilov (1951) and his colleagues, India and the Middle East form the primary centre of origin of most of the important legumes.
  • He included Cicer in the following centres of origin of the cultivated plants

    (i) The Indian or more exactly the Hindustan centre of origin of the cultivated plants, which includes Burma and Assam and excludes North west India-Punjab and the North- West Frontier provinces,

    (ii) The Central Asiatic Centre, including North-West India (Punjab, North-West Frontier Provinces, Kashmir), Afghanistan, the Soviet Republics of Tadjikistan and Uzbekistan and western Tian-Shan,

    (iii) the Near-Eastern centre of origin including Asia Minor and Transcausaia,

    (iv) the Mediterranian centre of origin and

    (v) the Abyssinian centre of origin, comprising Abyssinia, somaliland, Ethiopia (including the Hill country of Eritera).

  • Only a few beans, such as the French, the lima and the broad have been introduced into India from tropical America.
  • In general, India is rich in the species, varieties and forms of pulses.
  • Papov(1929) regarded Cicer as a comparatively young and incompletely differentiated group in which the process of individualization type, both geographical and morphological, still continued and that due to geographical isolation, races of one species might differ more sharply among themselves than from the neighbouring closely related species.
  • The European (Kabuli) and the desi forms of grams may be viewed as individualized races of Cicer arietinum L established as a result of such severe geographical isolation.
  • The chick-pea is extensively cultivated as a winter crop thoughout India, especially in the Northern States.
  • According to watt (1908), this is the Cicer of the Romans: parched seed of Cicer fructnum as an article of food with the poor, has been mentioned by Horace.
  • The specific name owes its origin to a not altogether fanciful resemblance of the seed, when first forming in the pod, to a ram's head (the 'Krios' of the Greeks).

 
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Ikisan - Area and production of bengalgram

Area and Production

World

  • Chickpea is raised over an area of 11.15 million ha in the world with a production of 8.58 million tonnes and the productivity range was around 7694 kg/ha.
  • The major chickpea growing continents are Asia, Africa and Australia.
  • The major chickpea producing countries are India, Pakistan and Turkey.

Area, production and productivity of chickpea in the world during 2004

Country

Area in Ha. Production in Mt Productivity in Kg/Ha

  Australia

113,000

114,000

1008

  Ethiopia

168,089

135,930

808

  India

7,290,000

5,770,000

791

  Iran

755,000

310,000

410

  Mexico

150,000

240,000

1600

  Myanmar

208,000

230,000

1105

  Pakistan

986,000

548,000

555

  Turkey

630,000

650,000

1031

World

11,155,425

8,583,139

769

Source : FAO STAT Citation

India

  • In India, maximum area under chickpea is in Madhyapradesh (2.22 million ha) followed by Rajasthan 0.97 million ha.
  • The maximum chickpea production was in Madhya Pradesh followed by Uttar Pradesh with 2.20 & 0.83 million tonnes respectively.

State wise area (m ha), production (Mt) and productivity (kg/ha) of chickpea in India during 2002

State

Area

Production

Productivity

Orissa

0.03

0.02

526

Bihar

0.07

0.07

987

Andhra Pradesh

0.29

0.36

1274

Gujarat

0.05

0.03

554

Haryana

0.15

0.12

855

Karnataka

0.48

0.29

606

Uttar Pradesh

0.86

0.83

960

Madhya Pradesh

2.22

2.20

989

Rajasthan

0.97

0.74

759

All India

6.10

5.27

865

Source: DACP

Districtwise Area, Production & Productivity of Bengalgram in Andhra Pradesh 2003-04

District

Area in Hectares

Production in tonnes

Yield in Kg/ha

1

2 3 4

Vizianagaram

178 319 1790

Visakhapatnam

215 385 1790

East Godavari

5 9 1790

Krishna

153 278 1790

Guntur

17127 30735 1790

Prakasham

78451 140427 1790

Nellore

2604 4661 1790

Cuddapah

44584 49221 1104

Ananthapur

51461 15438 300

Kurnool

139705 110507 791

Mahaboobnagar

13145 15695 1194

Rangareddy

5783 6905 1194

Medak

39571 47248 1194

Nizamabad

8778 10481 1194

Adilabad

8627 10302 1194

Karimnagar

6990 8353 1194

Warangal

3490 4167 1194

Khammam

239 285 1194

Nalgonda

953 1138 1194

State

422111 456554 1081

Source : Season & Crop report, Andhrapradesh Government


 
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Ikisan - Uses and nutritive value of bengalgram

Uses And Nutritive value

  • Cicer is a multipurpose pulse crop.
  • Its leaves are largely used as vegetables,
  • The grain being eaten raw or boiled as a vegetable, spiced and cooked.
  • The grain is also parched and eaten.
  • When ripe, the grain is split into pulse or dal and eaten variously as usual, bhajias, chutney, puran-poli or in sweets-like mysore-pak or as phutanas (parched gram).
  • The grain is largely fed to horses and the leaves and stalks are dried and used as fodder for cattle.
  • Animals thrive well on this wholesome diet which helps to build muscle strength.
  • Roasted gram alone or in combination with popped rice is commonly eaten in South India.
  • It is well known that pulses form a very important item of dietary all over India, being a good source of protein, especially in the vegetarian diet.
  • Much has also often been said about the inadequacy of certain nutrients in the diet of major portion of the population, stressing the need for an improvement in the quality of grain.
  • The basis of a nutritional assessment of any pulse is known to be governed by
    (i) the amount of its total protein content
    (ii) its biological value,
    (iii) its digestibility,
    (iv) net protein value,
    (v) the essential amino acids, viz. cystine, tyrosine, tryptophane and histidine and
    (vi) vitamin and mineral contents.
  • Naturally, the different pulses differ in these important constituents.
  • On a consideration of the contents of all these constituents,
  • Bengal gram (Cicer arietinum) and black gram (Phaseolus mungo) have been assigned a higher order of nutritive merit, green gram (Phaseolus aureus), lentil (Lens esculenta) and soybean (Glycine max) being the next best. Then follow red gram (Cajanus cajan) and the horse gram (Dolichos biflorus), the rest being comparatively, inferior, mainly lacking in their biological value and not protein.
  • A good study of the range of vitamin content of the various pulses is, however, still wanting.
  • Whereas, the above is a broad comparison of the nutritive value of individual pulses, the innumerable species, varieties and forms thereof are further likely to afford considerable variation in each or some of these constituents.
  • As the protein content was found to be higher in the case of the grain reaped from alluvial soil, it appears that the fertility status of the soil has considerable effect on the protein content of the grain as is often evidenced with better fertilization.

 
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