Rice Intensification technology gaining popularity in India

December 15th, 2008 - 4:06 pm ICT by ANI  

Coimbatore, Dec 15 (ANI): Rice Intensification technology known as System of Rice Intensification (SRI) for having bigger yields with less seeds, water and fertilizers is gaining popularity in India.
Inaugurating a national symposium on “System of Rice Intensification in India - Policies, Institutions and Strategies for Scaling Up” at Tamil Nadu Agricultural University, here recently, Norman Uphoff, a scientist from Cornell University of the United States, said that the SRI technology is being extended to several other crops besides rice in India.
“Farmers in India working with various NGOs are now using this ideas for sugarcane, rabi and even for mustard. In Orissa, there are farmers who developed system mustard intensification using this idea for mustard crops. So we don”t know where this is going to end. I keep emphasizing we are only beginning in the new direction,” he added.
Uphoff said that ”SRI” is not merely a technology but a science, a paradigm and a movement.
SRI is a novel approach to increase the rice production by constructively reducing the capital fertilizer, labour and water and promoting more abundance, diversity and activity of soil biota in and around the plant’’s rhizosphere.
“SRI is nothing but a way of cultivation of rice where we will be using small quantity of seeds, very less quantity of water, less quantity of fertilizers and more bio-fertilizers. The spacing will be increased and young plants will be transplanted,” said G. S. G Ayyangar, a former secretary in the Department of Agriculture, Tirpura.
The SIR technology is reported to have been successfully tried out in 25 countries. Many research institutes have initiated experimental trials on SRI across the country in several states including, Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, Orissa, Tripura, Punjab, West Bengal, Chattisgarh, Karnataka, Assam, Bihar, Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Jammu and Kashmir and Madhya Pradesh to promote among farmers SRI in paddy cultivation.
“Earlier we used to cultivate paddy crop in a traditional way only. I have contacts with Tamil Nadu Agricultural University and they guided me to cultivate paddy with SRI technology. I was able to get the highest yield at the district level winning the first prize,” said Manonmani, a farmer.
In India, rice cultivation spreads over an area of about 42.5 million hectares in varying ecologies and soil and climatic conditions, with a total production of around 87 .6 million tones representing the second largest area and production in the world. (ANI)

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