Madurai

Farmers urged to adopt modern technology to ensure more paddy yield

Assembly Speaker M. Appavu at the paddy festival in Palayamkottai on Friday.

Assembly Speaker M. Appavu at the paddy festival in Palayamkottai on Friday. | Photo Credit: Special Arrangement

A few hundred farmers, mostly paddy growers participated in the ‘Paddy Fest’ organised in Palayamkottai on Friday to expose the farmers to modern technologies being used to get higher paddy yield, organic farming practices and to sensitise them on the need for conserving and growing the traditional native paddy varieties.

 Addressing the participant farmers, District Collector V. Vishnu said the agricultural production, which had been hit hard due to a range of reasons, particularly due to climate changes, had consequently affected the farmers’ income also. Hence, the agriculturists should learn to adopt modern scientific technologies to tide over this crisis.

 He also exhorted the growers to preserve native paddy varieties which were widely cultivated in Tamil Nadu decades ago but not being grown to a greater extent in the modern days.

 “Like Norway, which has preserved over 10 lakh seeds in its seed repository, we, who have so far registered 50 plus native paddy varieties, should preserve those varieties to be passed on to the generations to come. Since these native paddy varieties are of having various advantages and health benefits, it should be promoted and cultivated,” Mr. Vishnu appealed.

 He said the high-yielding varieties such as Ambai 16, TPS - 5, TKM – 13, Aaduthurai – 45, Ko – 51, JGL – 1798, IR – 50 and traditional native varieties like Seeraga Samba, Kitchadi Samba, Karuththa Kaar, Maappillai Samba, Karuppu Kavuni, Katta Yaanam and Kulla Kaar, which were being raised in Tirunelveli, should be cultivated predominantly.

 The Collector also informed that farmer Ponnu Puthiyavan of Maanur has bagged second rank in the State-level competition in the traditional variety section and won the cash award of ₹75,000 for having harvested 10.20 tonnes of Vaasanai Seeraga Samba per hectare. Moreover, woman farmer Lakshmi Devi of Ambasamudram has bagged the third prize of ₹50,000 for having harvested 10 tonnes of Authoor Kitchadi Samba paddy per hectare.

 Speaker M. Appavu, who handed over ₹25 lakh-worth farm implements to the agriculturists, said the Tamil Nadu Government which was giving a range of incentives to the farmers to revolutionise agrarian sector in the State besides waiving the crop loans, had drawn an extensive plan to increase the farmers’ income by introducing new technologies and organic farming practices.

 He said the direct purchase centres had been opened in sufficient numbers in the district to ensure the hassle-free procurement of paddy from the growers in transparent manner. “Since the farmers can easily sell their produce in the direct purchase centres after registering their produce in a dedicated portal and get minimum support price fixed by the government, the growers are happy now,” Mr. Appavu said.

 Since the farmers of Tirunelveli were cultivating on over 1.25 lakh acres, the growers should also adopt modern farming practices to increase the yield.

 “Moreover, the farmers should go in for value-addition of paddy to augment their income. At least, the growers should hull the paddy and sell it as rice to the consumers to get the additional revenue, which is now going to the traders,” Mr. Appavu said.

 The Department of Agriculture had displayed ancient farm equipments like ‘eravatti’, a steel bucket used to manually lift water from a source at the lower level to irrigate an elevated field, ‘kamalai aetram’, a huge steel bucket used to lift water from the wells using two bulls, earthen ‘kulukkai’, which was used to store the harvested paddy in ancient times and other farm implements used till eighties. Moreover, the native paddy varieties, organically grown farm produces, high-yielding vegetable seeds, horticultural saplings, organic nutrients etc. had also been displayed.

 Good number of progressive farmers involved in organic farming practices, scientists from rice research institutes, experts from Killikulam Agriculture College and Research Institute shared the technology involved in getting high yield.


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Printable version | Jun 26, 2022 3:00:46 pm | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Madurai/farmers-urged-to-adopt-modern-technology-to-ensure-more-paddy-yield/article65411145.ece