‘Israel model of farming to be used on pilot basis’

Farmers take part in the organics and millets fair in Chikkamagaluru on Saturday.

Israel model of farming will be implemented on a pilot basis in a few areas in Chikkamagaluru district, said Agriculture Minister N H Shivashankar Reddy. 

Speaking at the organics and millets fair in Chikkamagaluru on Saturday, he said the Israel model of farming includes drip and sprinkler irrigation. Using less chemical fertilisers, the highest yield can be achieved under the system, he added.

Further, he said the excessive use of chemical fertilisers has affected the fertility of the soil. It has an impact on the health of the people and nature. Our ancestors were cultivating millets in the past. Later, the cultivation of paddy, wheat and jowar increased over a period of time and the traditional methods of farming received a setback, he added. 

He urged the farmers to cultivate millets using organic manure. The farmers in Chitradurga, Tumakuru, Kadur and Tarikere cultivate millets. The millets do not consume more water. There is a need to create awareness on the cultivation of millets, said the minister.

Further, he said that organic federations will be given subsidy up to Rs 50 lakh to process millets. There are 14 organic federations in the district. The Department of Agriculture is mulling the constitution of a state-level organic federation. 

The minister said that there is a need to provide good marketing facilities for the sale of millets.

The government is also mulling over the minimum support price for millets, which is likely to be announced in the next budget, he added.

Karnataka has the credit for implementing an organic farming policy way back in 2004. The government has been providing subsidies for digging farmland and the purchase of farm implements. 

Deputy chairman of the council S L Dharme Gowda said that the farmers should get a suitable price for the farm produce cultivated by them. 

MLA C T Ravi said there is a need to give priority to the traditional system of farming along with modern technology. Indian system of farming should be promoted. 

ZP President Sujatha Krishnappa said millets are cultivated on 880 hectares of land. Women are showing interest in the cultivation of millets in the district. 

University of Agricultural Sciences, Bangalore, retired vice chancellor Narayana Gowda said that millets should be purchased through milk producers society. Jackfruit is cultivated in abundance in Malnad. There is a good market for jackfruit. The farmers should cultivate different species of jackfruit, he added.

DC M K Srirangaiah, ZP CEO C Satyabhama and others were present.

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‘Israel model of farming to be used on pilot basis’

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