Natural Farming practices find wider adoption in Gurez valley

Srinagar: Natural Farming practices are finding wider adoption among the farming community of Gurez valley. This has been made possible due to the intensive compaign and sensitization programmes of KVK-Bandipora-II (Gurez) regarding natural farming practices in different villages of this beautiful valley.
Dr. Bilal Ahmad Bhat, Programme Coordinator, KVK Bandipora-II (Gurez), told that owing to the widespread degradation of natural resources due to indiscriminate use of chemical fertilizers and plant protection chemicals, the focus now has shifted to farming practices which are compatible with nature.
Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers’ Welfare, GoI is promoting Natural Farming and various KVKs spread across the length and breadth of the country are playing an important role in promoting Natural Farming. In this regard, KVK Gurez has also been selected as one of the KVKs entrusted with the responsibility of out-scaling of Natural Farming practices for their wider adoption.
According to Dr. Parveen Kumar SMS (Ag. Extension) and Nodal Officer, Natural Farming project KVK-Bandipora-II (Gurez) various awareness and sensitization programmes on different aspects of Natural Farming have been conducted in different villages of the valley. Many farmers have been trained and demonstrations have also been laid out in farmer’s fields using various natural farming practices. The results have been encouraging.
An interesting thing is that the difference between the plots laid under natural farming and those laid under traditional methods are quiet visible. Farmers have also reported improvement in soil health and quality of produce. Mr. Jamal Ahmad Bhat, an adopted farmer of KVK-Gurez from village Daasi who has also shifted to natural farming counts many benefits of natural farming practices.
Mohd. Shamas-u-din Baba another young entrepreneur form village Nayel in Gurez duly recognizes the role of natural farming practices in human health as well as cleaner environment. Ghulam Mohammad Bhat another farmer from Bagtore in Gurez has an integrated farming system where different cereal crops, vegetables, spices and fruit trees now being raised using natural farming practices. Farmers of the region however have also expressed their concern on the lack of appropriate marketing opportunities for their produce.
Dr. Bilal Ahmad Bhat, Head KVK-Gurez further informed that this Kendra is also working on marketing aspect too. The marketing support will be provided to them through various tie-ups with various Multi National Companies, relevant agencies, mobilization of producers into SHGs and FPOs and value addition and processing of their produce.

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