After the tremendous success of the Agriculture Extension Project implemented in several districts of northern Karnataka, OCP Foundation, from Morocco, has now launched a new Integrated Farming Systems (IFS) Project through Indian Society of Agribusiness Professionals (ISAP) along with KISAN Call Center (KCC) in three districts of Rajasthan, Bundi, Baran and Sawai Madhopur. The project will promote new concepts of integrated farming, as part of OCP Group’s broader commitment and programmes to promote precision farming. Such new concepts of integrat ed farming will help smallholder farmers from the local area, increase their crop yield, and thus improve their income and provide access to markets for marketable surplus. In addition, the project will also offer primary healthcare services through the village resource centers. Hence, the whole state of Rajasthan will benefit from the value chain being set up in the project by OCP Foundation.
The Integrated Farming Systems (IFS) was launched at the inauguration of the Kisan Call Center at Krishi Vigyan Kendra, Anta in Distt. Baran on June 8, 2014. The Kisan Call Center (KCC) was inaugurated by Dr. Z S Solanki, in the presence of OCP Foundation and OCP Group representatives, as well as a galaxy of eminent scientists including Dr. S L Mehta (Former Vice Chancellor of Maharana Pratap University for Agriculture and Technology, Udaipur), Dr. S A Patil (Former Vice Chancellor of University for Agricultural Scienc es, Dharwad, Former Director of IARI, and former Chairman Krishi Mission Govt of Karnataka), and many other renowned agriculture scientists. The KCC will facilitate addressing farmers’ specific queries in real time, helping them take appropriate action on a timely basis.
The four-year project will target over 9,600 smallholder farmers and provide them with valuable advices relating to risks and income diversification. Under the IFS, the farmers will get real time advisory services on a long-term basis, dealing with crop production, animal rearing, value addition at farm gate and market linkages, provided by a team of farm extension advisors. Furthermore, the project will set up Farmer-owned Agribusiness Centers in each of the six blocks in these three districts aiming at achieving economic sustainability. Besides, it will invite and enable active participation of trained farmer leaders (youth and women), involved in farm-to-market linkage activities both for input and output management.
While inaugurating the project, Mr. Nawfel Roudies, Director of the Agricultural Development Program at OCP Foundation said that OCP Foundation was extending this support under South-South Cooperation policy of his country. The main purpose is “supporting family farming for a sustainable agriculture”.
The launch of the IFS project in Rajasthan was made possible by the outstanding success of similar Agriculture Extension Project implemented over the span of the last four years in three districts of Northern Karnataka. Dr. Satish Chandra, Director, ISAP enumerated the salient features of the IFS model within the project. Dr Z S Solanki, Vice Chancellor of the Agriculture University Kota, said, “OCP Foundation-IFS Project will be a boon for the farmers in Rajasthan.” Sudarshan Suryawanshi, CEO, ISAP thanked the farmers an d the other stakeholders present at the event.
As another first-of-its-kind initiative towards real time farming at Anta (district Baran), a toll free KISAN Call Center (KCC) has also been initiated with support of OCP Foundation in the premises of Krishi Vigyan Kendra (1800 102 2585). On June 8, 2014, around 1,500 local farmers were present to learn more and understand the benefits of this Call Center at Krishi Vigyan Kendra (KVK) Anta in Baran district of Rajasthan. The Call Center is designed to instantly address the queries of the farmers to help them take precise action to mitigate production and climatic risks or losses in respect of their crops and Kota Agriculture University is the technical advisor to the project.