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TRICOR & ICRISAT team up to organise study tours for Telangana farmers
Friday, 08 December, 2017, 08 : 00 AM [IST]
Realising tribal farmers’ need to adopt new technologies in agriculture and to improve their incomes, the Tribal Cooperative Finance Corporation Limited (TRICOR) of the Telangana government’s Tribal Welfare Department has joined hands with the International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics (ICRISAT) to organise exposure visits-cum-study tours for them in the southern state.

The visits will give 500 farmers a chance to learn innovative farming techniques, develop marketing strategies for their produce and enhance their knowledge. To be held over a period of one year, the programme will conduct training in 20 batches, with each farmer receiving training over a six-day period.

While batches will be organised along identified themes like agriculture, horticulture, floriculture, vegetable cultivation, livestock and poultry, fisheries, and dairy, the programme’s focus will be on innovative and sustainable farming, training on marketing strategies, exchange of local farming concepts and basic knowledge on harvest processing and preservation. Farmers will also be taught about drip irrigation techniques across the globe.

The first batch of the programme was inaugurated at ICRISAT, Patancheru, recently in the presence of Thati Venkateshwarlu, Member of the Legislative Assembly from Aswaraopet, and chair, Tribal Welfare Department, Telangana; Shankara Rao, deputy general manager (A&F), TRICOR, Lakshmi Prasad, state mission manager, TRICOR and Sandhya Rani, assistant director (horticulture), Tribal Welfare Department.

Kiran K Sharma, chief executive officer, agribusiness and innovation platform (AIP), ICRISAT, and S Aravazhi, chief operating officer, innovations and partnership (INP) programme, AIP-ICRISAT, also welcomed the participants.

Venkateshwarlu spoke on the need to adopt new farming techniques, and the benefits of growing millets for farmers. He encouraged farmers in the first batch to use the programme to learn new techniques and help build a better Telangana by educating other farmers on their return.

He also mentioned the state government’s efforts towards supporting farmers through various irrigation projects to facilitate cropping round the year.

Sharma stressed the need to link farmers to markets to improve incomes. He encouraged farmers to adopt new technologies and inputs to better yields, and turn to entrepreneurship in agriculture through adopting effective post-harvest technologies.  He also stressed the need for public and private entities to readily integrate other sectors like information technology (IT) into agriculture for better results.

Aravazhi said that through its technical support cell (TSC), AIP-ICRISAT will extend its support to the participating farmers for a year-and-a-half after the duration of training. Participating farmers can return to ICRISAT for any queries or help towards the implementation of learnings from the programme.
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