Minister for Agriculture V.S. Sunil Kumar has said the second crop in kole lands will be taken up this year itself.

Addressing a high-level interaction on agriculture development at Kerala Agricultural University(KAU) at Mannuthy on Sunday, the Minister said the technical programme to achieve this would be prepared after detailed discussion with kole farmers before July 31.

Summing up the discussions he had with KAU scientists and officers of the departments of Agriculture, Irrigation and Electricity in this regard, the Minister said second crop could either be paddy or paddy and pulses as might be decided.

He said the government had taken several steps to encourage farming and due attention was being given to kole lands.

Crop insurance

Crop insurance had been enhanced to Rs. 35,000 a hectare from Rs. 12,500. Various options to ensure sufficient water for the second crop of paddy would be explored. The government would also ensure availability of short-duration varieties, he said.

KAU Vice Chancellor R. Chandra Babu, in his introductory address, pointed out the necessity of modifying the package of practices in tune with climate change.

Agro climate zone

“A discussion on revising agricultural practices is highly relevant. Special recommendations for each agro climatic zone has also become imperative. The KAU will definitely play its part in these exercises,” he said.

Agricultural Production Commissioner Subrata Biswas said the envisaged surge in productivity, quality of produce and hike in farmers’ income could be achieved if all stakeholders work hand in hand.

With regard to soil management, the interaction proposed that soil nutrition protocols should be revised in the light of excess phosphorus found in soils of the State. Including micro-nutrients and regulating phosphorus content in mixed manure has to be ascertained and fertilizer producers need to be involved in realising this objective.

Referring to the quality of produce, it was resolved to calibrate State-level GAP recommendations (Good Agricultural Practices) with national level GAP. In order to ensure quality regulation and assessment, steps to introduce a quality regulation enforcement act would be initiated. The KAU will formulate a set of quality assessment specifications to facilitate this.

A discussion with officials of the national quality control agency has also been proposed.

KAU Director of Research P. Indiradevi; Director of Extension Jiju P .Alex; senior officers of the university as well as Department of Agriculture, Irrigation and Electricity board participated. A. Latha, Sudharmayi Devi, and C. Narayanan Kutty made presentations on double cropping in kole lands, soil management and quality control.

Says second crop could be paddy or paddy and pulses

Govt to ensure availability of short-duration varieties

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