Lac is a natural resin processing a rare combination of many valuable and desirable properties and consequently finding places in diverse and innumerable industrial uses. No other single resin has been put to so many applications. This resin of commerce is produced by a tiny insect, popularly called lac insect, which is distributed in India and neighbouring countries only. In India it is a source of subsidiary income, as an agro-industry. To the economically under developed areas in Bihar. Madhya Pradesh. West Bengal. Orissa. Assam and a few other states. Therefore, The promotion of lac industry in India is of special significance. Apart from this consideration, however, it has been for many years and even now an important earner of foreign exchange. There has been some anxiety in recent years that synthetic substances are threatening to jeopardize the position of Indian lac in world markets. But due to horrible hazards to synthetic substances, now-a-days, there is a gradual increasing demand of this precious natural resin. It is , therefore, essential to protect this indigenous industry and improve on the present position. There is no sure means of doing so other than by advancing our knowledge on the different aspects of lac cultivation and improving the products. The preparation of the present volume is motivated by the idea that an up-to-date review covering previous records and scattered observations on the various aspects of lac-culture might be of value in understanding its advanced knowledge and in stimulating further researchers in this field.
Compilation of this volume may be useful to the basic component of undergraduate or postgraduate courses of ‘Economic Zoology’ in different Indian Universities.
N. GHORAI, Post Graduate Centre of Zoology, Darjeeling Government College, University of North Bengal, West Bengal, India.