The Rubber Board in India is all set to promote rubber cultivation in nearly 4.5 lakh hectares of land in the non-traditional areas, prominently the North-Eastern Indian states. The Rubber Board has already identified the additional land by making use of the remote sensing data. Most of the areas fall in North Eastern states Tripura and Assam. In a quick response to the six point mission set by President A P J Abdul Kalam to produce additional 1 million tonnes of rubber within the next decade and increase the per hectare revenue of rubber growers in the next three years, the Rubber Research Institute of India has drawn up various strategies to realise the mission and efficient utilization of available resources. Currently, north-eastern states account for only less than 10 percent of the total rubber cultivating area in the country.
Location-specific research undertaken in the north eastern areas has proved that in spite of the adverse climate, production is about 65-70 percent of the yield from the traditional growing areas. Intensive research to evolve better technologies for increasing productivity in non-traditional areas will be taken up. The RRII has already established seven research stations in the non-traditional areas, including Orissa.