Regional Plant Resource Centre (RPRC)
The Regional Plant Resource Centre (RPRC) was established in 1985 with the mandate of collecting, conserving and propagating plant species, specialized and unique plant communities. The Centre implements various research trials relating to rare, endangered and threatened plants group including Orchids, Cacti, Medicinal Plant among other species through in situ and ex situ conservation trials. The Centre has established its research sites, conservancy areas in various National Parks, Sanctuary and Biosphere Reserve of Orissa.
In view of its role in the field of plant conservation, RPRC has been recognized as one of the R & D partners of Ministries of Environment & Forests, Department of Biotechnology, Indian Council of Agriculture & Research, Department of Science & Technology, National Medicinal Plant Board, Government of India and International Organisation like UNESCO and UNDP.
RPRC has set up pilot projects on conservation-poverty alleviation programmes in 5 different loactions in eastern India. The following are the activities carried out by the center with conservation-poverty links:
1. Assisting community groups in establishing medicinal plant garden units for production of plant parts for sale to local herbal drug manufacturers.
2. Subsidised sale of tissue cultured banana planting materials to farmers under BPL (below poverty line) category households under NHM (National Horticulture Mission) programme.
3. Alleviating poverty in 21 village clusters under CBNRM project by initating various livelihood programmes in endangered forest and wetland habitats in Orissa.
4. Supporting Similipal Biosphere Resesrve Authority to ground various rural development programmes for villages in buffer and transition zone, as the Lead Research and Development Center for biosphere reserve for Ministry of Environmnet and Forests, under world biosphere network project of UNESCO.