This story is about a cluster demonstration on oil seed implemented in 2015-16 in Nagapur village of Balianta block, Khordha district of Odisha benefitting 41 farmers covering an area of 16.4 ha. In this village farmers were cultivating groundnut 10 years ago after the harvest of paddy in the month of December.
KVK-Khordha under ICAR-CIFA, Bhubaneswar, Odisha had worked in the village with several interventions and observed that farmers have discontinued groundnut cultivation due to increased cost of seeds, heavy infestation of pests and diseases and other factors. The challenge faced by farmers of this cluster was on to break the discontinuance of growing oil seeds.
KVK had its presence in this village in many instances which made the cluster demonstration programme to be implemented in 2015-16. KVK analysed reasons for crop failure in groundnut and implemented this cluster demonstration. A meeting was conducted and farmers were encouraged and motivated to adopt groundnut cultivation. The cluster selected a leader Mr. S. K. Rout, a rural youth and a progressive farmer to facilitate with KVK in identification of farmers, delivering the seeds and to organize training and field days.
Distribution of seeds with an inception meeting was the key to farmers informing about the cluster demonstration and group marketing of the produce. To inform the package of practices a training programme was conducted to inform the details of the variety, seed treatment and inoculation with bio fertilizers, irrigation and mulching. As an initial step soil samples from their respective field after harvest of paddy was collected and analyzed.
The seeds were procured from Orissa State Seed Corporation Ltd for distribution. To further motivate the farmers IFFCO, Bhubaneswar and Sai Fertilizers, Kolkata were invited by KVK for demonstration of bio fertilizer and granulated Single Super Phosphate to increase production in the cluster. In the process an awareness meeting was also conducted on use of bio-fertilizer and its advantages.
Impact and Lessons Learnt
All the farmers irrigated the crop twice and followed package of practices as informed and trained by KVK. Farmers realised an average yield of 19.6q/ha compared to 17.2q/ha of district average production in groundnut. During the field day farmers were in high spirits that KVK brought back groundnut cultivation to their village after 10 years.
KVK got an assurance from this cluster that in forthcoming years they will continue groundnut cultivation. To further motivate KVK in early 2016 selected this cluster and invested to provide an exposure on latest technologies in a farmers fair. The lessons learnt were that institutions like KVK need to continue working in cluster approach for helping farmers.
Ananth, P.N., S. Singh and A.K. Dash
Krishi Vigyan Kendra-Khordha, ICAR-Central Institute of Freshwater Aquaculture, Bhubaneswar, Odisha