Uttarakhand is blessed with a variety of soil types and varying agro-climatic conditions, ranging from Sub-Tropical to Alpine, which is conducive for cultivation of various crops, yet farmers of Uttarakhand are suffering from several problems in agriculture such as continuous fragmentation of land holdings, far-off agriculture land from farmers houses, high cost of agricultural inputs, damage of traditional crops by wild and domestic animals, high transportation cost of agri-horti produce, non-availability of agricultural labour, lack of processing facilities at farmer fields, rainfed cultivation etc. Owing to the above reasons, traditiona agriculture in mountains has become un-economical or unprofitable.
Keeping in view the problems in traditional agriculture, cultivation of aromatic crops seems to be a viable solution for raising the economy of the farmers of Uttarakhand as aromatic crops can be grown successfully in stress and adverse conditions. Efforts have been made to develop aromatic sector in Uttarakhand as a major driver for upliftment of rural economy and to achieve this goal “Centre for Aromatic Plants (CAP)” was conceived in 2003 at Selaqui, Dehradun. Centre for Aromatic Plants, also known as CAP, is a R&D and extension institute of Govt. of Uttarakhand as an autonomous institute of State Medicinal Plant Board (SMPB), Govt. of Uttarakhand registered under Society Act – 1860.
CAP is steering multidisciplinary high quality research and extension activities in the field of aromatic plants with headquarter at Selaqui, Dehradun (Uttarakhand). CAP has been developed in such a way where all the required facilities for researchers, farmers and entrepreneurs are made available under one roof and the facilities like survey & identification, awareness & training, production of quality planting material, cultivation and extension on cluster approach, preparation of tech. literature & project proposal, consultancy, quality assessment & certification, linkage with industries, distillation facilities, buy-back facilities, marketing of essential oils & aromatic plants and library etc. have been created.