“Anand pattern” to drive Organic farming growth in North East

To put on the fast track the growth of organic farming in north eastern states, central government has designed a scheme based on the principles inherent to the Anand pattern for milk development in the country. The scheme will be accordingly followed in all the seven states of the region to make the tools for development including the knowledge of scientists, etc available to the farmer-participants. It will also

integrate knowledge systems and lead the professionals required to ensure best possible outcomes for the village communities and their natural environments. For implementation of the scheme nodal agency for development of North Eastern Region Ministery of Development of Ne Region (DONER) has set aside a fund of Rs 100 crore for the current year. Anand pattern as an organizational structure was a huge success, able to rapidly increase milk production in India which followed over 100 years of economic, social and political dynamics.

Based on similar lines taking into account the demographic pattern, cultural diversity and other factors the organic farming schemes has been designed to expedite the tepid growth process of the promising sector. Integration of farming system (IFS) approach with emphasis on two-four main commercial crops in combination with other crops under multi-cropping, rotational cropping, inter-cropping, mixed-cropping practices with allied activities like horticulture, livestock, animal husbandry (diary, goaterry piggery, poultry, duckery), apiculture, sericulture etc, the report said.

Many north eastern state governments are promoting organic agriculture . Sikkim has already brought 64,296 ha area under certification process. Nagaland and Mizoram have also drafted and adopted policies to promote organic farming, but they are yet to implement necessary strategies to under certification.

The scheme also envisages development of dedicated seed production cluster under each council/ federation which will be formed based on the Anand pattern of development followed in Gujarat under scheme Flood for the speedy development of dairy industry.

To implement the scheme a project management unit consisting of professionals will be set up in Guwahati by the DONER Ministry and placed under the administrative control of the North Eastern Council.

Retrieve from – http://news.webindia123.com/news/Articles/India/20151011/2699460.html

Efforts on to make tea industry climate-smart

Rainfall has traditionally been plentiful for growing tea, especially in India but with recent changes in the climate, surface and ground water are becoming important irrigation systems.

At a time when climate-change is impacting tea-cultivation in a major way, efforts are on to make tea estates climate-smart so that the industry develops resilience to uncertain and negative climate change impact.

A project has been launched by the Tea Research Association along with Southampton University on climate — smartening tea plantation landscapes, which would run for two years. It is funded by the U.K.-India Research Initiative.

The project is investigating the impact of climate change on tea production and livelihoods in North-East India, revolving around climate variability, land-management practices and climate-smart agriculture practice.

It may be mentioned here that tea is a rain-fed perennial crop, which provides the main ingredient for one of the world’s most important beverages. It supports livelihoods across the humid regions of south and south-east Asia and east Africa. The physiology of tea plants is closely linked to external environmental and climatic factors (elevation, precipitation, temperature, soil moisture, temperature and fertility, light duration and intensity, humidity, shelter, shade and CO2 concentration) and any adversity in these conditions can significantly impact yield, revenue and livelihood security. Rainfall has traditionally been plentiful for growing tea, especially in India but with recent changes in the climate, surface and ground water are becoming important irrigation systems.

Climate-risk is high in Assam, ranging from annual flooding of the Brahmaputra river due to intense monsoon rains and soil water-logging, to winter precipitation deficits with seasonal droughts. Regional trends indicate annual mean minimum temperatures have increased and annual mean precipitation has decreased, particularly in Assam. Such impacts will have a significant effect on tea crop productivity and directly affect the livelihoods of dependent communities as Assam contributes 50 per cent of India’s 1,200- odd million kg.

The effects, which were noticed over the last few years, seem to have become pronounced over the last three years or so leading an industry honcho to say: “it is no longer climate change…it is climate chaos”. ITA officials said that the weather was hardly following any pattern.

Crop-loss has become almost the norm across the world’s tea growing regions. India too has suffered. What worries the industry most is that although it has so far not experienced any major crop loss, tea quality is suffering and pest-attacks are increasing. Due to climate change, there has been crop loss during seasons when some of the best teas are harvested (spring and early monsoon).

However, broad-scale climate-landscape modelling predicts that tea yields in north-east India are expected to decline by up to 40 per cent by 2050. As yield is directly associated with revenue, changing climate is also likely to impact economic structures of those reliant on tea, particularly the smallholders given their increased vulnerability to changes in the system.

Retrieved from – http://www.thehindu.com/business/efforts-on-to-make-tea-industry-climatesmart/article7724021.ece