Agriculture Minister Krishna Byregowda has said that crop productivity and economical status of small farmers could be improved by adopting an integrated approach.

Speaking at the World Agricultural Forum Congress here on Wednesday, he said the number of small farm holdings was increasing while agriculture’s share in GDP was declining. Increasing productivity, providing market linkage to small farm holders and enhancing mechanisation were needed to make agriculture sustainable.

D. Venkateswarlu, Director of Animal Husbandy, Andhra Pradesh government, said that there was stress on resource availability, particularly land, for livestock production. To increase the fodder availability, the Union government wanted to earmark degraded lands for fodder production. Stressing the need for raising dual purpose crops, he said that climate change affected production of livestock and called for taking up research in this regard.

He said the State government was acting as a service facilitator rather than service provider and imparting training to educated rural youth in fodder production, artificial insemination and other aspects.