The department has identified 430 units covering an area of 4,300 hectares

The Department of Agriculture, in a bid to tackle seed shortages, relating to multiple agro-products, has been implementing seed village scheme for producing seeds of paddy, black gram, green gram, groundnut, sesamum and sugarcane for supplying the same to farmers during rabi and kharif seasons every year.

The department has identified 430 units covering an area of 4,300 hectares with a targeted certified seed production of 50,250 quintals under the Seed Village Programme (SVP) during the year 2011-12 year.

Seed supplied

Foundation class of seed from authentic sources had been supplied to the identified farmers for empowering them to take up multiplication of seed under the SVP scheme. The seed so produced will meet the requirement of farmers at the village, mandal and district level. The scheme ensures supply of quality certified seed of high yielding varieties to the farmers in time at their places at affordable prices besides ensuring quick multiplication of new seed varieties in a shorter time based on the crop situation.

The department identified a minimum of 50 to a maximum of 150 farmers for producing the mentioned crop seeds. Every year the department supplies the certified seeds at 50 per cent cost at the rate of one acre per farmer on an average.

Training was being accorded to the identified farmers on seed production and on seed technology for the seed crops grown in the seed villages.

The duration of the intensive training was for 3 days in three phases at the time of seed sowing, flower initiation stage and in the third phase during post harvesting and seed processing stage. Training is on seed production techniques, isolation distance, sowing practices and on agronomic practices. The seed growing farmers are trained to identify rogues and removal of plants from the seed plots and to maintain the quality of seed cleaning, seed grading, seed treating, seed shortage and seed packaging aspects.

Farmers who evince interest for setting up of seed processing units under 25 per cent back-ended credit linked subsidy scheme can form self help groups in this regard and take the necessary financial assistance from banks. Joint Director of Agriculture K. Venugopala Rao told The Hindu that the targets for seed production has been achieved in the just concluded 2011-12 crop year.

The production targets included paddy of 16,500 quintals, black gram of 6000, green gram of 1,500, groundnut of 4,000, sesamum 1,050 and sugarcane of 33,250 quintals.

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