Author Archives: G V Ramanjeneyulu

eKrishi Mobile application

We are happy to announce the launch of eKrishi crop advisory app for android. This would initially launched in english but getting translated into various Indian Languages. In addition to providing knowledge on organic/natural farming/NPM practices, this would link the farmers/field level functionaries to other master farmers, experts and scientists who can help in problem diagnosis and advice.

Register for Beta Testing of the app.

 

2016 Organic Farming and Marketing

1st to 5th March, 2016

Register online last date for registration 14th February, 2016.

Download application form Training-2016 NOMINATION FORM

Decades back it was about oils and coca cola, few years back it was about food adulteration, few months back it was Maggi and now it is about vegetables; we all heard them for wrong reasons. Either contamination or residues or deadly adulteration making them unsafe to eat.

How did it happen? The way these foods are produced and the resources that are used to make them appealing might be making them dangerous. If we make spoil our environment, the basic needs like food, air, water too get spoiled and ultimately affects humans. Understanding this, many organisations, farmers and entrepreneurial individuals are trying to shift to natural and eco-friendly methods. There are various schools of thoughts in this approach. Centre for Sustainable Agriculture (CSA), with its proven record of scientific and scalable approach, announces a training course on “Organic farming and Marketing” during 1st to 5th March 2016.

Venue: Hyderabad

Medium of instruction:English

For whom: the training is for the field level functionaries who are working with farmers and entrepreneurial individuals who want to learn about organic agriculture.

Expectations from the participants:

  1. Understanding English language is necessary.
  2. Agriculture experience is desired.

Course fee:Rs.10000/- per head (towards lodging boarding, course material and field visit). Participants have to make their own travel arrangements.

Content:

The course would cover the following aspects

  1. Understanding Agro-Ecological approaches
  2. Building soil fertility
  3. Understanding pests and diseases; their management in field and storage
  4. Understanding and managing seeds
  5. Field visit
  6. Organising farmers, quality management/PGS/certification and Marketing (practical would be on production and business planning)

Morning theoretical classes would be there and afternoon the practical sessions.

About CSA:

Centre for Sustainable Agriculture (CSA) is an independent resource organization engaged in establishing models of sustainableagriculture working in partnership with NGOs and Community Based Organizations by scaling up the successes and engaging with the establishment for a policy change. CSA believes in promoting sustainable agricultural technologies that are based on farmers’ knowledge and skills, theirinnovation based on local conditions and their use of nature’s products and processes to gain better control over the pre-production and production processes involved in agriculture. CSA works with farmers to conserve their resources and their rights. CSA has scaled up the Non-pesticidal Management (NPM experiences) through Community Managed Sustainable Agriculture (CMSA) program of Society for Elimination of Rural Poverty (SERP). CSA has won Rural Livelihood Awards from Bihar and Maharashtra States for its innovative work. CSA adopts value chain approach in its work and works on production issues like seeds, soil fertility, pest management, farmer institutions for collective benefit, markets and dialoguing with government on farmers’ issues. It has a publication wing which brings out monthly magazines as well as resource books for the agriculture practitioners.

CSA is working in three states (AP, Telangana and Maharashtra) and has an experience of providing technical support in various states in India as well as abroad. On farmers’ producer organisations (FPOs) CSA has good experience with working models. CSA has formed “SahajaAharam Producer Company Ltd (SAPCL)” which is a federation of several producer cooperatives spanning across the states of Andhra Pradesh, Telangana and Maharashtra. SAPCL is an initiative to connect farmers with consumers.

Please send the nominations to the following address:

Centre for Sustainable Agriculture,

12-13-445, street No.1,

Tarnaka, Hyderabad – 500017

Email: training@csa-india.org

Ph. No. 040-2701 7735

For any queries, you may contact Mr. G. Chandra Sekhar – 9440450994.

Grounding Global Seeds

Organic cultivation: learning from the Enabavi example

enebavi

download another article in english: GREEN Village enabavi

Is it possible to get a good yield without using chemical fertilizers? Will a shift to organic affect our food security? Can we manage insect pests without using pesticides? Will organic cultivation still be profitable for farmers?

These are some of the often asked questions by farmers when problems of modern agriculture are being discussed.

Enabavi, a small village in Warangal district, Andhra Pradesh promises to answer all these.

Situated off the Hyderabad-Warangal highway near Jangaon town, Enabavi is today an inspiration for many other villages and farmers, thanks to the efforts of the local organization called CROPS (Centre for Rural Operations Programmes Society) supported by the Centre for Sustainable Agriculture (CSA).

Visitors

This small village attracts visitors ranging from farmers to policy makers who want to understand the concept of successful sustainable agriculture. In the last three years more than 10,000 people have visited this village.

“Commercial crops like cotton are the main crops grown in the district. From 1997 onwards, large numbers of farmers’ suicides have been reported from this district. In the middle of this distress, Enabavi showed the resolve of a strong community which decided to take control of its agriculture in its own hands. “With just 51 households belonging mostly to the backward castes, the village started shifting to non-chemical farming about a decade ago. In 2005-06, the entire 282 acres was converted to organic farming. There is strong social regulation within the community towards organic cultivation to ensure that there are no ‘erring farmers” says Dr. G. V. Ramanjaneyulu, Executive Director, Centre for Sustainable Agriculture, Secunderabad.

The elders in the village take the youth along with them. They have also started investing in teaching their school-going children the knowledge and skills of non-chemical farming.

Variety of crops

The farmers grow paddy, pulses, millets, cotton, chilli, tobacco and vegetables. They process their paddy and sell directly to consumers and also through a marketing channel called Sahaja Aharam in Hyderabad.

Their average spending on chemical fertilizers and pesticides used to be around Rs.3,500 per crop per acre while it was around Rs. 500 per acre for seeds. The traders would dictate the price for the produce in addition to charging interest for the inputs supplied. Now, all of this has changed. The farmers do not spend a single rupee anymore for buying all the inputs.

Past experience

“In the 1970s this village like many others across the country, also went through the same process of using more and more chemicals to increase the productivity. By 1995 problems started showing up. Investments kept increasing but the returns were not good.

“In late 90’s pests like red hairy caterpillar caused devastating effects in this region. The initiatives on managing the pest using non chemical approaches evolved into non pesticidal management which is now widely practised in Andhra Pradesh and other states.

The confidence in using non chemical approaches, helped farmers to move away from chemical fertilizers towards sustainable solutions,” says Dr. Ramanjaneyulu.

Some farmers started looking for options like using tank silt, poultry manure, vermi-compost and farm yard manure. They set up their own compost manufacturing units in their fields and started following various ecological practices.

They also started to depend on their own seed for many crops, except for cotton. Now farmers also produce seeds for others. They have set up self help groups for men and women separately and started thrift activities too.

As the farmers moved into more and more sustainable models of production they realized the importance of natural and common resources for sustaining their own livelihood.

Social rule

As a result the tank in the village was desilted and is presently being managed by the community. A cooperative called Enabavi Organic Farmers Cooperative was formed for supporting the several activities and to improve their collective bargaining power in the markets.

“Today, Enabavi has many valuable lessons to teach other farmers, not just on how to take up sustainable farming. They also have lessons to share on social regulation, learning from each other, the benefits of conviction born out of experience and most importantly, the way out of agricultural distress by taking control over one’s own farming,” adds Dr. Ramanjaneyulu.

To visit and learn more on Enabavi interested readers can contact Dr. G. V. Ramanjaneyulu, Executive Director, Centre for Sustainable Agriculture, 12-13-445, Street no-1, TarnakaSecunderabad-500 017, ph. 09000699702, email: ramoo.csa@gmail.com, facebook: ramoo.agripage, website: www.krishi.tv