'Agriculture project helped farmers' income reach Rs.200,000'

Credit: agricultureonblog.blogspot.com

The National Agricultural Innovation Project (NAIP) has led to an increase in the annual income of farmers in 500 villages in India from Rs.15,000 to Rs.200,000, an official said here Tuesday.

NAIP director Rama Rao said the project has further created a Rs.150 crore horticulture market owned by erstwhile street flower vendors by helping them use technological innovation to increase the usability of flowers from a day to three days.

The NAIP will be organising an "Agri-Innovation Conclave" May 18-19 in New Delhi, and it will be preceded by a Kisan Parivartan Yatra May 11-18 from Hyderabad to New Delhi via Nagpur, Bhopal and Mathura.

"The yatra and the conclave will serve as vehicles where farmers who have benefitted from the NAIP will share ways and means of converting technologies and innovations into successful business enterprises," said S. Ayyappan, director general of the Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR), which launched the NAIP in 2006.

"By facilitating research on production, processing, value addition, marketing, resource use, pilot scale testing of developed technologies etc, the NAIP has gone a long way in improving the livelihood of poor people in rural areas," he added.

The NAIP, which is partly funded by the World Bank, has ensured that Re.1 spent in agriculture is bringing back Rs.13 for rural farmers, Rao said.

"Our aim is to bring strategic research in the field of agriculture and related areas and develop indigenous technologies so that we do not have to depend on foreign technologies," he said.

Rao further said that NAIP innovations have led to the development of 82 production technologies and 137 processing technologies that were adopted by rural farmers.

The NAIP is currently spread across 364 centres in India with 203 sub-projects.

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