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Govt to showcase Sikkim's success in organic farming

Govt to showcase Sikkims success in organic farming

New Delhi: In a move aimed at giving a push to organic farming across the country, the Agriculture Ministry has decided to showcase the performance of Sikkim in organic farming as the model for its Paramparagat Krishi Vikas Yojana (PKVY). As per officials, the initiative would help in encouraging farmers to adopt organic farming.

As per the latest report of Agriculture Ministry, out of government's total 50,000 hectares target to bring under organic farming in the North Eastern states, 45,918 hectares have been made suitable for organic farming and 2,429 farmers' interest groups have been formed, thereby connecting 48,949 farmers with the scheme.

Calling upon farmers to adopt organic farming, Union Agriculture Minister said, "We need to bring a revolution in organic farming just like the Green Revolution. For this, government policies alone will not work. The society and all stakeholders will have to come forward and contribute."

Sikkim, a small state in the northeastern region that borders China, has achieved the tag of organic state under the visionary leadership of Chief Minister Pawan Chamling, who had taken the decision to bring the state's entire agriculture land under organic farming in 2010 and the state was declared an organic state in 2016.

According to the reports of Sikkim government, the state has registered total food grain production of 1,00,580 tonnes in an area of 62,490 ha during the year 2015-16, which was 1,04,000 tonnes in an area of 72,500 ha in the year 1995-96.

However, despite a 16 per cent reduction in area under cultivation, the state witnessed just 3 per cent decline in production, but the productivity increased by 12 per cent in the same period.

In the year 1995-96, the area occupied by rice crop was 15,930 hectares while in 2015-16 it was 10,670 hectares. Similarly, the area under wheat cultivation during 1995-96 was 8,420 hectares while it was only 320 hectares during 2015-16. The productivity of rice has increased from 1,437 kg/ha in 2003-04 to 1,845 kg/ha in 2015-16.

In contrary to other crops, the production of cardamom has increased from 3,500 tonnes in 2004 to 4,110 tonnes in 2015 despite a reduction in cultivation area from 24,800 hectares and 17,000 hectares.

On the promotion of organic farming, the agriculture minister had said, "India is traditionally the world's largest organic farming country. The government is committed to taking India on the path of modernity in agriculture and wants to introduce new techniques."

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