Baiju Sreedhar is a resident of Kottuli in the city. In the eight-cent land around his house, he cultivates a few varieties of vegetables. Mr. Sreedhar is averse to using chemical fertilizers or pesticides on his vegetables as he grows them for his “own use.”
He often finds that an entire bunch of plantain or the ash-guard that grows in abundance is more than what he needs for his family’s use. “Same is the case with the mangoes that the couple of mango trees bear ever year,” he says.
Many like Mr. Sreedhar, however, do not know where to sell these surplus produce. “This is a situation many face in a modern-day city life,” says Babu Parambath, a green activist and project coordinator of ‘Nirvau,’ a residential forum at Vengeri here.
According to him, Mr. Sreedhar can take a membership with Niravu’s Farmers’ Club, if he is serious about his approach to organic cultivation.
“He can be a typical farmer to cooperate with the ‘Organic Village’ concept, officially launched by Niravu here on the eve of World Environment Day.
It envisages to create a network of organic farmers (even if they are nominal farmers with a few cents of land around their house with only one or two produces) to create a pool of different produces for marketing among prospective buyers. “We already have 80 members in our club, which is aided by NABARD,” says Mr. Parambath. All of them cultivate one or another variety of vegetables in their yard, all organically, he says.
The Niravu Organic Village concept visualises an expansion of its Farmers’ Club membership to all prospective farmers in-and-around the city, whose produces will be thoroughly monitored by an expert committee and periodically tested at the Pesticide Residue Research and Analytical Laboratory under the College of Agriculture in Vellayani.
The members can post the details of their produce on the Niravu website http://www.niravu.com, where prospective buyers can give their orders.
“The online marketing will be launched only on the 1st of the Malayalam month of Chingam,” says Mr. Parambath. “We are scouting for an appropriate outlet to be set up in the city for the produces of the Niravu Organic Village, which has been already registered as a brand.”
For details, call: Ph: 9447276177.