By Tasneem Mubarak:
Doubling the farmers’ income is quite possible by using the power of science and understanding of existing situations. Moreover, in the background of changing agriculture scenario, conservation and cultivation of indigenous crop varieties
With the intervention of KVK for instance a farmer from remote village of Kulgam could earn more than double the income from same piece of land by using local land race of paddy. Mshkebudji, a land race of paddy, indigenous to the Kashmir Valley is very famous for its aroma in the state and beyond.
The strain was at the verge of extinction because of it’s
KVK conducted 35 trials in the mid belts of district and during the investigation it was observed that productivity of the variety was at par with the existing varieties grown in this belt, but returns were reasonably high.
Impressed with the results Mr Ab Salam Ganie resident of a remote village Ladgoo took great interest in the variety. Salam is a strong believer in Integrated Farming. He is a marginal farmer with land holding of 1ha (20 kanal), out of which he cultivates paddy over an area of 0.35ha (7 kanal). On rest of area he cultivates apple. He is among only few farmers who cultivate paddy in the village as rest of the farmers have converted their entire paddy fields into apple orchards.
Excellent crop at Salam’s field could attract the attention of media and his story was recorded and played in Krishi Darshan programme of Doordarshan, which is very famous among farmers across the state. With wonderful results at Salam’s
Efforts are underway at Mountain Research Center for Field Crops (MRCFC)-SKUAST-Kashmir to transfer blast resistant genes into the existing strain and good progress has already been made by the concerned scientists.
The way things are evolving and scenarios changing, conservation and cultivation of indigenous crop varieties
(The author is Dr. Tasneem Mubarak working asSr. Scientist & Head KVK-Kulgam, SKUAST-Kashmir. He can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org)