First-ever 'Savayava Santhe' in Udupi

District In-charge Minister Pramod Madhwaraj lamented that the organic products are priced low and the farmers should bear the brunt of lower market value.

Speaking at the first-ever Savayava Santhe (organic market) held in Udupi, Dakshina Kannada and Chikkamagaluru area, the minister said farmers should be supported to grow organic products. To ensure better price for such farmers, a separate market was indeed necessary. As there would be huge demand for organic products, it is necessary for farmers to be transparent and committed.

There is also the possibility of farmers deviating from the responsibilities and getting into the routine farming to meet the demand for supply using pesticides and fertilisers. Officials should be thoroughly invigilating and ensure that the organic farm products are only supplied in the market.

He urged the farmers to take up organic farming to keep people away from diseases like cancers.

District admin support

Deputy Commissioner Priyanka Mary Francis said Savayava Santhe will be held on Sundays. Non-certified materials should not be permitted. The produce would get better price and all marketing facilities will be provided by the district administration. The area would be made an organic hub. Around two tonnes of organic vegetables and fruits were sold out in barely two hours in the first market, she added.

The Savayava Santhe had organic vegetables, foodgrains and fruits from Udupi, Dakshina Kannada and Chikkamagaluru districts. Six organic farming clusters are established in Udupi district and 632 farmers have been practising organic farming on 655 hectares of land since 2013-14 under the Savayava Bhagya Yojane introduced by state government. The clusters include Hirebettu, Kadur, Kattingeri in Udupi, and Belinje in Karkala and Japti and Yelajith in Kundapur. Under the project, a Dakshina Kannada, Chikkamagaluru and Udupi Districts Regional Cooperative Organic Farmers Associations’ Federation is set up.

The farmers in these clusters grow organic rice like Rajamudi and Kempakki and other products like rice flakes, organic jaggery, pulses, millets like navane, sajje, baragu, ragi, oodhalu, harake, organic vegetables and fruits, including tomato, ladies finger, gherkins, elephant yam, green chilli, leafy vegetables, bitter gourd, ash gourd, pomegranate, chikoo, beans, bananas and spices like onion, garlic, cardamom and pepper.

There are 200 members in Dakshina Kannada, Chikkamagaluru and Udupi Districts Regional Cooperative Organic Farmers Associations’ Federation. Under the Federation, there are six organisations in Udupi, 11 in Dakshina Kannada and 27 in Chikkamagaluru. There are 3,000 hectares of farm land in the three districts earmarked to grow organic products.

Farmers who grow organic products are certified by the organisation based in Bengaluru. There would be three years’ observation, after two years, the farmer can apply for the certification.

The farmers are also into organic farming under the Paramparagatha Krishi Vikas Yojana (PKVY) of the Union government in nine villages in Udupi district since 2015-16. As many as 292 farmers are following organic farming in 108 hectares of land under this scheme.
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