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REGIONAL WORKSHOP ON ORGANIC SRI AND SEED EXCHANGE IN TAMIL NADU

Workshop Description

Programme

G. Moghanraj Yadav, managing trustee of VAANGHAI (Virtual Action on Agriculture by Nagurway Growing and Husbandry of Animals in India) in Tamil Nadu state, reports on an organic SRI rice production workshop (Uzhavar Mugham – 2007), conducted August 17 and reported in The Hindu (see article).

The main objective of the Uzhavar Mugham, which has been organized every year for the past 10 years, was to distribute pre-released rice varieties to a network farmers working with VAANGHAI for Multi-Location Trials (MLT) as part of a Farmer-to-Farmer Seed Movement. The program supports the cultivation of organic rice under SRI methodology to reduce the costs of cultivation, with minimal irrigation, improving productivity to enrich farmers’ lifestyle and income level. Shri R. Muthusamy, Senior Regional Manager for the Indian Overseas Bank (IOB) regional office in Nagapattinam, presided over the function.

The workshop was attended by 150 farmers from various districts of Tamil Nadu state. There was participation from local villagers, farmers, self-help groups, members of the VAANGHAI-affiliated Farmers’ Club, and VAANGHAI Trust. The program is given below, listing the officials and scientists who addressed the participants and topics covered. There was good coverage in the press, both English and Tamil. There were also enquiries from other states. A recurrent theme was that by using organic inputs with SRI, yield potential is increased better than with chemical fertilizer.

A powerpoint presentation on SRI methodology in Tamil was made, facilitating effective interaction between the farmers and agricultural scientists. SRI system of cultivation is suitable for delta areas, especially the tail-end Cauvery farmers. Through adoption of these methods, farmers get increased yield over and above their normal paddy cultivation. Field trials proved that the system can lead to remarkably higher yield with simultaneous quality improvement in the seed produced. the farmers can adopt the system in the district.

A booklet on SRI in Organic Farming (in Tamil), prepared by Vaanghai Trust, was released during the function. Another book on “Farm Practices in Delta Region” (in Tamil) by Dr. S.S.Nagarajan was also released. Traditional rice varieties grown by Vaanghai network farmers were displayed and distributed, and awareness of these opportunities was created among the participants.  Traditional vegetable seeds were also distributed to farmers. To support the organic farmers involved in SRI methodology, Sikkal branch of IOB has come forward to extend financial assistance to make rotary weeders widely available.

Emerging issues on conclusion of the workshop:
1.   Need to create Training Centre to inculcate Participatory Approach in SRI and Organic Farming;
2.   Each Network Farmer should promote SRI with at least one other organic farmer every year;
3.   Each Network Farmer should distribute 2 kg of organic rice seeds within their neighbouhood for expansion of the Farmer-to-Farmer Seed Movement.

Programme: ORGANIC WORKSHOP ON RICE IN SRI
August 17, 2007
VAANGHAI, Sikkal, Sangamangalam, Nagapattinam, Tamil Nadu

Organic Farming: Global Scenario, Scope & Challenges for India – K. Venugopal, Additional General Manager (DD), National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD)

Role of Agriculture in India’s Economy and Problem of Migration of Farmers to Urban Areas -- R. Muthusamy, Sr. Regional Manager, Indian Overseas Bank, Nagapattinam

Organic Rice Production in SRI Methodology -- Dr. T. M. Thiyagarajan, Director, Tirur Rice Research Station, Tiruvallur District

Rice Varieties Suitable for Samba and Thalady Seasons - Dr. P. Parthasarathy, Tamil Nadu Rice Research Institute (TRRI), Aduthurai, Thanjavur District

Suitable Rice Varieties for Delta Areas - Dr. K. Thiyagarajan, TRRI

Cultivation Techniques in SRI - Dr. K.  Rajendran, TRRI

Seed is First Link in the Food Chain and Symbol of Food Security; Farmer-to-Farmer Seed Movement Leads to Biodiversity - Mr. G. Moghanraj Yadhav, Managing Trustee, Vaanghai

A Decade’s Footsteps of Traditional Seed Bank - S. Ramesh, Trustee, Vaanghai

Traditional Seeds of India - G. Mohana Natarajan, Sanghai Uzhavar Mandram

Vermi-Castings - Dr. K. Gouthaman, Krishi Vigyan Kendra, Sikkal, Nagapattinam

Impact of Green Revolution and Importance of Indigenous Cattle Breeds for Organic Farming – Dr. A. Kasi Pichai (Retd.), Dept. of Animal Husbandry

 

 

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last updated: Dec. 3 , 2007

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