Achievements of the DBT Project entitled “Agro-ecological conservation using Integrated Approach”

  Name of the Project:                       “Agro-ecological conservation using integrated approach”

  Implementing Agency:                      Krishi Vigyan Kendra, Babhaleshwar

                                                            Taluka Rahata Dist. Ahmednagar

                                                            Maharashtra

  Total Outlay:                                       17.84 lakhs

  Project Period:                                   3 years

  Period of the Project :                       March 2001 to October 2003

 

PI and Co-PI:                         PI:             Mr. Purushottam Hendre

                                                            Co-PI: 1. Mr. Shantaram Sonawane

                                                                        2. Mr. Bharat Dawange

Project Components:             1. Vermicompost

                                               2. Biopesticides

  Objectives:

a)     To educate and train the 200 SC/ST beneficiaries about the advantage of Bio-farming

b)     To set up suitably scaled vermicompost and biopesticides unit on the beneficiaries land and provide hands on training and on its uses

c)      To provide technical and managerial backup to the units thus set up including marketing assistance.

d)     To monitor the use of vermicompost and biopesticides on the crops of beneficiaries.

 

I. Production of Inputs at KVK for supply

Following eco-friendly inputs were produced and supplied for the farmers under the project:

  1. Vermicompost
  2. Earthworm Culture
  3. Vermiwash
  4. Biopesticides

  1. Vermicompost Production:

  a)     Establishment of Model demonstration unit at KVK.

The KVK has established the model demonstration at its Farm. The vermicompost unit has the size of 34 X 25 sq. ft. The purpose of the vermicompost unit is to provide the skilled training, vermiculture rearing and vermicompost production. The KVK in response to the demand from farmers has extended the production unit has established additional vermicompost unit on an area of 50 X 20 sq. ft. area. The total production of vermicompost from the model unit was 45 tonnes.

b)     Vermi-Unit under Farm Shed: The unit can accommodate 06 beds of dimension 12X3X1.5 cu. ft. The yield obtained during the project period under this type of production method is 9.5 tonnes

c)     Vermi-Unit under Tree Shade: The unit has also been expanded to other areas under the tree shade to meet the requirements of the beneficiaries under the project. Under this type of system 8 beds of 12X3X1.5 cu.ft were laid additionally yielding a total quantity of 10.0 tonnes Vermicompost during this half year.

d)     Total Vermicompost Production: 64.5 tonnes

Comparative study of Vermicompost production under farm shed and tree shade:

 

Sr. No.

Particulars

Farm shed vermicompost production

Tree shade vermicompost production

A. General Observations

01

Time required for vermicomposting

35-40 days

50-55 days

02

Water requirement (interval)

2-3 days

1-2 days

03

Pest problems faced

Less

Red ants, termites, birds

04

Migration of earthworms

Not observed

25-30% during rains

05

Multiplication of earthworms

Faster

Slower

06

Cost for shed

2000-3000/- per unit

Saving

B. Nutrient Composition

01

Moisture content (%)

40.8

34.7

02

Organic matter (%)

44.2

37.6

03

Organic carbon (%)

25.7

21.86

04

C:N ratio (%)

9.16

10.42

05

PH

7.12

7.57

06

Electrical conductivity (mmhos/cm)

2.93

2.07

07

Total Nitrogen (%)

2.80

2.10

08

Total Phosphorus (%)

1.90

1.65

09

Total Potassium (%)

1.55

1.46

  * Test Report and analysis performed at KVK Soil Testing Lab.

  From the above data it is observed that under farm shed the vermicompost was produced in less time and with less frequent water. Also the pest problems were observed to be less under farm shed. The quality of vermicompost in farm shade was also observed to be better as compared to that in the tree shade.     

      Earthworm species: Esenia foetida and eudrillus euginae

      Feeding material: Locally available feeding material was utilized which included cow dung, partially decomposed crop residues like wheat hay, soybean husk, bengalgram husk, sugarcane trash and sunhemp stalks.

2. Vermiculture Production:

            During the initial period of project initiation the earthworm culture production was not started and hence for supply of earthworm culture for the SC/ST beneficiaries the culture was brought from outside. A total of 150 kg culture was brought from outside. After the utilization of earthworm culture for vermicompost production multiplication of earthworm culture also followed. There was a production of 452 kg of earthworm culture at the Model demonstration unit at KVK Farm, which was supplied to the SC/ST beneficiaries under the project.

 

3 Vermiwash Production- The Vermiwash demonstration cum production unit was also started at KVK vermicompost unit. The vermiwash is an extract of earthworm body secretion and other bodily discharge, which is rich in plant nutrients in soluble form, plant grow hormones and antibiotics. The unit has supplied till date 800 litres of pure vermiwash. The unit utilized for giving practical training to the SC/ST project beneficiaries to start their own vermiwash production units. The vermiwash has very encouraging results on crop to enhance growth, flowering and fruit setting. Fifteen SC/ST project beneficiary farmers have also started the vermiwash production on their own vermicompost units.

 

4 Biopesticides Production:

          The KVK has a biopesticides production laboratory producing different biopesticides for supply to the farmers. The production of different biopesticides was also undertaken for supply of these biopesticides to the SC/ST beneficiaries under the project. Following biopesticides were produced and supplied to the SC/ST beneficiaries under the demonstration:

According to the needs identified among the targeted SC/ST population, the following bioagents of pests and diseases have been produced in the KVK Biological laboratory, during last three years.

 

1.HaNPV                                            350 lit.

2.Noumuraea relayii.                         300 kgs

3.Trichoderma viridae.                    3050 kgs

4.Paecillomyces spp.                      1050 kgs

5.Verticilium lecanii                         100 kgs

6. Tricho Cards                                 500 no.

 

Apart from the biopesticides production various botanicals were also suggested for the farmers for use under the project. These botanicals have made a favorable impact on reduction on use of chemical pesticides on different crop pests.

The SC/ST beneficiaries are utilizing the following extracts on their crops:

- Neem seed Kernel extracts                                               3%

- Chill + Garlic extract                                                         3%

- Tobacco decoction                                                          1%

- Custard apple seed extract                                              2%

- Custardapple Leaf extract                                                5%

- Ipomoea carnea (Besharam)                                           5%

- Mundulea suberosa (Supli)                                               1%

- Acorus root extract                                                          1%

- Neem oil (0.5%) + Embellia seed extract (0.1%)

- Castor seed extract                                                          1%

2. Activities Undertaken

 

Selection of Beneficiaries:

The SC/ST farmers were identified from the selected villages using the PRA techniques and matrix ranking methods. The selected families were selected in such a method where the productivity problem persisted due to various ecological factors like poor soil fertility status and pest and disease resistance and resurgence. The soil problems were primarily focused to reduce the pH and haphazard fertilizer application while the pest problems were focused to reduce the incidence of sucking and lepidopterous pests on the common cultivated crops. The soil problems were handled with specific emphasis on the vermicompost production and its application on the cultivated crops. The project report focused the production of the vermicompost and use of other biocontrol methods to reduce the pest incidence on various crops at the selected beneficiaries farm.

The list of beneficiaries where the vermicompost units were installed has been enclosed as annexure.

  1. No. of Training Programmes and Demonstrations conducted:

The KVK undertook several awareness generating training programmes to sensitize the farmers regarding the use of the vermicompost. The programme was implemented through the Farmers Clubs established by the KVK in the selected villages. Several preconditions were applied for selecting the beneficiaries to ensure the success of the programme. This included availability of the animal waste and/or biogas plant, crop residue, personal interest towards the use and production of the vermicompost and ability to motivate other farmers to involve in the vermicompost programme. The training programme was also focused to provide skilled and vocational training for the SC/ST farmers and rural youths. The skills were imparted on various aspects of vermicompost production like establishment of shed, bed laying, pretreatment of crop residue, addition of biofertilizer cultures, laying of vermiculture, watering vermibeds, harvesting, care and maintenance of beds etc. Similarly the training on vermiwash preparation was also provided to the SC./ST trainees which included the effects of vermiwash, preparation of vermiwash, laying of layers of vermicompost and earthworm, watering the vermiwash bin, collection of vermiwash etc. The training on biopesticides and botanicals use was also imparted. The training sessions comprised the preparation and use of different biopesticides and botanicals.

a) Training programmes undertaken: 51 training programmes for 1245 farmers in the selected villages were undertaken during various technical group meetings of the farmers in villages. The training also involved the women farmers where there was considerable interest.

  Venue                                 March 2001 to October 2003  

                                         No.of Prog.       No.of Participant  

On Campus                    10                          261  

Off Campus                    41                          984  

Total                                 51                          1245  

b) Demonstrations -Total 200 vermicompost units have been started at the beneficiaries’ field up to the March2003. In addition to this the direct SC/ST contacties have supplied earthworm cultures for 60 indirect contacties who have also established vermicompost units. This has helped to establish the vermicompost units to other farmers. In total the project has been able to provide the benefits to 260 farmers for demonstration. The KVK has also undertaken a comprehensive agro-ecological conservation emphasizing on use of organic compost as well as use of other biological nutrients like vermiwash. There are over 15 SC/ST farmers who have also started producing the vermiwash from the earthworm culture for use on crops as nutrient sprays. Beneficiaries are successfully producing the vermicompost and utilizing it in its crop cultivation programme. Some beneficiaries have also gained additional income by selling the vermiculture and vermicompost and which has also as an income generating activity in the village itself besides improving the soil status and quality of the agriculture produce.

  2. No. of beneficiaries created in various activities of the project:

  A. Training Programme

The KVK has undertaken off campus as well as on campus training programme on the topics as mentioned below that were part of the project objectives. The trainings were specifically conducted to impart the skills as well as generate awareness regarding the use and benefits of the vermicompost in crop production. The on campus training was conducted for three days while the off campus training was conducted for two days.

 

Sr No

Title of the Training

On campus

Off campus

 

No.

No. of SC/ST beneficiaries

No.

No. of SC/ST beneficiaries

Total No. of Training

Total No. of SC/ST beneficiaries

01

a) Vermicompost

04

107

16

397

20

504

 

b) Vermiculture

02

52

04

86

06

138

 

c) Vermiwash

01

25

03

64

04

89

 

d) Biopesticides

02

53

13

291

15

344

 

e) Botanical

01

24

05

146

06

170

 

TOTAL

10

261

41

984

51

1245

 

B. Demonstration Units:

Sr No.

Activity

No. of Units/activity

No. of beneficiaries

Area benefited

(Acre)

01

Vermicompost

i) SC/ST Direct Contacties

ii) Indirect Contacties

 

200

060

 

200

060

 

255

072

02

Vermiwash

15

15

042

03

Botanicals

03

36

065

TOTAL

278

311

434

  C. Crop Demonstrations:

Sr No.

Name of the Crop

No. of beneficiaries

Area benefited

(Acre)

01

Sugarcane

122

152

02

Onion

63

112

03

Pomegranate

17

35

04

Bottlegourd

09

14

05

Lucerne

20

18

06

Soybean

25

65

07

Brinjal

22

26

08

Lime

11

14

09

Cotton

25

36

10

Wheat

15

17

11

Tomato

19

21

12

Bittergourd

03

03

13

Watermelon

06

06

14

Grapes

04

04

15

Bajra

10

15

TOTAL

371

538

Note: The number of demonstrations taken by the beneficiaries includes one or more number of crops.

  D. Other Extension Activities:

 

Sr No.

Activity

No. of activity

No. of beneficiaries

01

Field Day

03

145

02

Exhibition

06

21000*

03

Exposure Visits

06

123

* The exhibition was installed in villages during the festival/local fair which was thrown open to all farming

community including SC/ST farmers

  3. Income and employment generation etc.:

The target beneficiaries have started using the vermicompost and the other biopesticides in their spray schedule regularly in an integrated manner. They have raised their income from not from their sale of vermicompost and vermiculture but also raised their income by adopting an integrated nutrient management system comprising a judicious utilization of nutrients based on appropriate soil analysis and use of vermicompost. The KVK has provided special emphasis on balanced used of nutrients in order to increase the productivity and the income. The vermicomposting activity has been able to provide an increase in annual income of 5000 to 25,000/- to the beneficiaries from sale of earthworm culture and vermicompost. Apart from this the beneficiaries have been able to raise their crop incomes to an extent of Rs. 3,000/- to 5,000/-.

The application of biopesticides and production of botanicals has also been done by the beneficiaries. The production of botanicals is not on large scale but is based on seasonal crops that face the onslaught of diseases and pests.

There are three self help groups that have started production and utilization themselves. The group produces the botanicals for their own consumption. The production and utilization of the botanicals have helped them to improve the crop productivity and raise their family income also.

There has been increase in employment due to vermicomposting and use of pesticides by the target beneficiaries to a large extent. There are over 200 direct beneficiaries under the project that are generating an employment of 75 mandays /unit. Apart from the direct beneficiaries the beneficiaries under the project have also supplied the earthworm culture to the 60 contact farmers who have additionally gained employment and income from vermicomposting activity in their respective areas. The project in general has been able to generate a net employment of more than 20,000 mandays per year under the project.

Similarly the botanicals are also being produced by the beneficiaries on seasonal basis. There are two farm women groups and one farmer club that has taken up the production of botanicals for use as pesticides. Each unit is generating an employment of 280 mandays per year and the employment generated by all three groups is 840 mandays each year. The total employment generation due to the project activities is 20,840 mandays per year.

Income Generation of SC/ST Farmers by sale of Vermicompost & Vermiculture on Commercial Basis:

Sr No

Name of beneficiaries

Sale of Vermiculture

Sale of Vermicompost

Total Income in Rs.

 

Quantity (kg)

Income (Rs.)

Quantity (t)

Income (Rs.)

01

B R Tambe

40

32000

8

17600

49600

02

S K Tambe

21

16800

8.84

19448

36248

03

D A Tambe

26

20800

4.0

8800

29600

04

VN Bhanage

09

7200

2.7

5940

13140

05

LH Gaikwad

08

6400

3.5

7700

14100

06

BS Ohol

6.5

5200

2.5

5500

10700

07

SG Bhand

15

12000

5.7

12540

24540

08

RV Patil

08

6400

2.8

6160

12560

09

HJ Bansode

04

3200

3.5

7700

10900

10

PC Navandar

03

2400

6.1

13420

15820

11

MK Bhagwat

02

1600

1.94

4268

5868

12

JS Tupe

05

4000

2.0

4400

8400

13

AB Girme

03

2400

3.0

6600

9000

14

US Mule

06

4800

3.0

6600

11400

TOTAL

156.5

125200

57.58

126676

251876

Average

11.17

8942

4.11

9048

17990



4. Impact of project implementation in the vicinity of the Target Population in their socio-economic upliftment:

The impact created due to the project activities is mentioned as below:

1. Social Impact

The target beneficiaries and the indirect contacties farmers show a favourable change in their thinking, attitudes and general behaviour in the social setup. There is an increase in the level of their Cosmo-politeness, acceptance of the risk in undertaking non-conventional crop enterprises and other decisions for improving their farm incomes. There has been also a greater degree of involvement of the beneficiaries in the other village development programmes through participation in Gram Panchayat meetings and demanding their due through active deliberations. This has been largely brought about by the KVK’s group based activity and organization of farmers clubs, women farmer clubs and self help groups. The village level groups have fair representation of the SC/ST farmers also. This has helped to tap the other benefits of the Govt schemes.

Qualitatively, the beneficiaries have made improvements in living standards, made improvement in their cosmo-politeness, risk bearing ability, information seeking behaviour, shown significant trends in the level of aspirations.

Economic Impact:

There is an increasing demand of the organic matter based fertilizer due to increase in the cost of fertilizers and also awareness on supplementing the organic matter through rich organic sources.

The farmers who have obtained returns from the crops under the demonstrations has been explained here:

Sr No.

Name of the Crop

Pre Intervention Stage

Post Intervention Stage

Cost of Production

Gross Income

Net Income

Cost of Production

Gross Income

Net Income

01

Sugarcane

16500

24500

8000

14500

26600

12100

02

Soybean

4600

7800

3200

3900

7800

3900

03

Bajra

3000

5000

2000

2400

5000

2600

04

Onion

14500

27400

12900

13300

28500

15200

05

Cotton

7600

14000

6400

5800

15000

9200

06

Wheat

6300

8400

2100

5575

8400

2825

07

Brinjal

12850

18600

5750

11450

20160

8710

08

Tomato

16950

27400

10450

14650

28350

13700

09

Pomegranate

26500

42800

16300

22900

44100

21200

10

Bottlegourd

13300

24400

11100

11600

26800

15200

11

Bittergourd

14700

28500

14300

12825

30200

17375

12

Lime

13750

25600

11850

9800

25600

15800

 

 

 

 

104150

 

 

137810

TOTAL

8680

 

 

11484

The above crops are major crops undertaken by the target beneficiaries and are representative of the crops grown by the beneficiaries. The average increase in income of the beneficiaries is Rs. 2804/- per beneficiary per acre from the respective crop. The highest increase in income obtained by the beneficiaries is Rs. 4900/- per acre in Pomegranate crop while the lowest increase in income of Rs. 600/- per acre has been obtained in bajra crop by the beneficiaries due to the intervention of project activities.

Total Production and Value of Vermicompost Generated by Beneficiaries:

Sr No

Range of Production in tons/Unit

No. of beneficiaries

Total Vermicompost Production

Value of Vermicompost in Rs.

01

> 10

  08

113.34

249348

02

5 – 10

  37

240.95

530090

03

2 – 5

102

321.59

707498

04

< 2

  53

81.22

178684

TOTAL

200

757.1 0

1665620

  Impact of Project Activity in the Vicinity of Target Population:

  1. The attitude of the farmers in the vicinity of the target population has changed favourably in adopting eco-friendly and less environment damaging methods of crop cultivation.
  2. Most notable changes observed in the vicinity of the target population is adoption of organic based substitutes like non-edible cakes, vermicompost and utilization of crop waste.
  3. The application of chemical fertilizers is specifically based on the soil test analysis provided by the KVK.
  4. The indirect contacties have been observed to decompose the crop waste instead of burning the crop residues.
  5. The farmers in the vicinity of the population have started using the botanical extracts like neem oil, cow urine, ipomoea, annona, acorus, Chilli-garlic extract, Mundulea etc. and other plant extracts for pest control as a first option instead of randomly selecting the chemical pesticides.
  6. There is a also an enhanced level of awareness on use of NPV on vegetables, Tricho cards on sugarcane, Trichoderma and Nomurea, Verticillium etc. which were hitherto not known or not available.
  7. There is an accepted perception that the level of income from the crops could be enhanced through reduction in the cost of production by adopting in-situ methods of vermicompost, organic supplements and botanical pesticides use.
  8. The addition of organic supplements for crops has changed from 1 to 2 times/year from earlier once in two years.
  9. The Farmers Clubs and Women Self Help Groups have shown greater acceptance towards use of biopesticides/botanicals and vermicompost in crop production.
  10. The Non SC/ST farmers in the vicinity have shown interest in using vermiwash since use of vermiwash has proved to be better in improving the crop stand as a bioregulator.

  General Impact of the Project Activity on target areas:  

Sr No

Particulars

Pre Intervention Stage

Post Intervention Stage

01

Crop Situation

Poor yield & low net returns

Improvement in yield as well as increase in average net returns of Rs. 2804/-

02

Changes in Pest & Disease

Higher susceptibility to pests and diseases, Random Pesticides application, Build up of resistance to pesticides

Increased tolerance to pests & diseases, controlled and last- resort use of pesticides, No signs of pesticide resistance due to prophylactic use of alternate pesticides.

03

Signs of Predators & Parasites

Hardly seen due pesticide overuse

Resurgence of predators reported by the beneficiaries

04

Use of Botanical extracts

Did not exist

Was commonly followed and repeatedly

05

Type of Inputs in Agro Service Centres in target areas

Only chemical pesticides and fertilizers were kept for sale

Organic fertilizers as cakes, other commercial grades and Biopesticides like Trichoderma, verticillium and botanicals like neem oil was also kept for sale along with other chemical fertilizers and pesticides.

06

No. of Vermicompost Units

Conventional compost pits

260 vermicompost units

07

Knowledge of Pests/Predators

Not known

Identification by SC/ST beneficiaries possible

08

Preference of Pesticides

Chemical Pesticides

Biological Botanical Chemical pesticides

09

Organic Fertilizer Quality

Inferior 0.8:0.6:0.3% NPK

Superior 1.3:0.8:0.5% NPK

10

Earthworm activity in treated plots

Not seen

Observed after every irrigation schedule

11

Soil pH

8.40 to 8.60

8.10 to 8.25

12

Soil Organic Carbon

0.45 to 0.48

0.55 to 0.65

 

Impact of Integrated Approach of vermicompost and Biopesticides use on Crop by beneficiaries:

Sr No

Name of Crop

No. of beneficiaries

Critical

Inputs

Impact

01

Sugarcane

122

Trichogramma @ 3 card/acre

+ Vermicompost @ 1tons/acre

a)25-30 % reduction in chemical fertilizers.

b)Less than 5% incidence of stem borer in treated plots as against 20-25 % in untreated plot

c) Av increase in yield of 8.5%

02

Onion

63

Trichoderma 0.5%+ Neem oil 3ml/lit+ Cow urine 0.5%+ Vermicompost @ 0.5tons/acre

a)Increase in bulb size & reduction of neck diameter due to controlled N-release

b).Less than 5% incidence of thrips in treated plots as against 15% in untreated plots

c) Av increase in yield of 9.3%

03

Pomegranate

17

Trichoderma+ Paecilomyces (20gm/

plant) %+botanical extracts+ Vermicompost @ 3kg/plant

a)Less than 2% incidence of wilting in treated plots as against 10% in untreated plots

b)No incidence of Root knot nematode

c) Improvement in overall fruit quality as color, size and appearance.

04

Soybean

25

Neem Oil+ Noumurea%+botanical extracts+Vermiwash(4litre/acre)+Vermicompost 0.5ton/acre

a)Increase in yield upto 5%

b)Reduction of 30% cost of fertilizers

05

Brinjal

22

Paecilomyces+

@3 kg/acre +

Verticillium 0.5% spray+

Botanical extract + vermicompost 0.5 t/acre

 

a)Less than 5 %incidence of sucking pests 

b)Incidence of nematodes checked completely as against 15% in untreated plots

c) Increase in yield of 12.3%

06

Lime

11

Use of Neem based/botanical formulation +

Trichoderma + vermicompost 3kg/plant

a)Reduction in the flower drop problem.

b)Considerable reduction in micronutrients deficiency symptoms.

c)Less incidence of sucking pests and whitefly on the treated plots

07

Cotton

25

Trichoderma + Neem Oil+ Noumurea+ NPV+ Botanical extracts+ vermicompost 1.0 t/acre

a)Increase of 8% in yield and quality of bolls

b)Reddening of leaves and bolls reduced significantly

c)Sucking pests & bollworm infestation was reduced

08

Wheat

15

Neem oil 3ml/lit

(2sprays) + vermicompost 0.5 t/acre

a)Good germination and tillering.

b)Improvement in grain size and quality.

c)Reduction of jassids & aphids infestation

09

Tomato

19

Trichoderma @3kg/

Acre+ Neem oil

0.5%+ Botanical extract+

HaNPV 400ml/acre+

Vermiwash+

vermicompost 1.0 t/acre

a)Yield increase of 5% in alkali soil.

b)Reduction in flower drop problem.

c)20-25 %reduction in chemical fertilizers.

d) 7-8% incidence of fruit borer in treated plots as against 20-25 % in untreated plot

 

  The yield increase reported as above has been obtained due to cumulative effect of use of biopesticides, vermicompost, and vermiwash along with judicious fertilizer application based on soil test analysis.  

5. Detailed publication/information materials and strategies brought out:

         Various other extension activities were undertaken to disseminate the Bio-village component on large scale. This included various exposure visits, exhibitions, radio talk and publication in newspaper, periodical like Krishi Vritta and printing and distribution of folders.

  1.            Pocket Diary: 500 copies of Pocket Diary is developed by the KVK for the project beneficiaries to maintain the vermicompost unit records as well as crop demonstration data

2.      Publication: Various articles were published in the local newspaper and also in the KVK’s quarterly magazine named Krishi Vritta on use and impact of the DBT project on Integrated Agro-ecological conservation. The more emphasis given to publish the success stories of the beneficiaries of the project to percolate the vermicompost and bio-pesticides technology among the SC/ST farming community. The KVK has brought about six folders for the information of SC/ST beneficiaries and published 10000 copies of these publications as follows:

i.    Use and benefits of Vermicompost Technology – 2000 copies

ii.    Integrated Nutrient management in Crops – 1000 copies

iii.    Success Story on Impact of Vermicompost Technology – 2000 copies

iv.    Use of Biopesticides in crop pest management – 2000 copies

v.    Use of Trichoderma against Soil Borne Fungal Diseases – 1000 copies

vi.    Utilization of Botanical Extracts in Pest Management – 2000 copies

3.      Teaching material: Various agricultural teaching material and audio visual aids were prepared for the training and demonstration purposes. This included the charts, laminations, panels, blow-ups and CD of multimedia PowerPoint preparations. Two Compact Discs were prepared on the major components of the project namely on Vermicompost and Biopesticides, which were shown, for the SC/ST farmers.

4.      Exhibition: The KVK’s DBT project team also participated in six District level exhibitions held at Ahmednagar, Akole, Kolhar Taluka Rahata, Kashti Taluka Shrigonda, KVK Babhaleshwar and Pandharpur which exclusively depicted the use and production of vermicompost and biopesticides on different crops. About 21,000 farmers visited the exhibition and noted the exhibits prepared under the project like various Biopesticides as NPV, Trichogramma, Trichoderma and other models like Vermicompost unit.

5.      Exposure visit: Six exposure visits of the 123 SC/ST farmers and one farmwoman group were organized for the selected beneficiaries under the project. SC/ST farmers visited the Organic Farm of Shri Haridas Jayram Bansode, Dadh Bk Village, Kolhar, Dadh Budruk and Chinchpur villages where the farmers are intensively practising eco-friendly methods of crop cultivation. All the farmers visited the organic farm and were exposed to the benefits of integrated farming approach as per the project objectives. The exposure visit organized was fruitful in motivating the farmers to take up integrated farming system using the vermicompost and biopesticides.

6.      Radio Talk:

The KVKs SMSs especially the PI and Co-PIs under the Project participated in the Radio based Farm School organized by the Prasar Bharati AIR Ahmednagar Station especially on eco-friendly Farming methods of Crop production for the farming community of the district. There were a total of 12 radio talks especially on the Integrated Approach of Eco-friendly methods of Crop Production. Similarly, an Innovative and Interactive Program on All India Radio Ahmednagar Station was telecast by the PI and Co-PIs of the DBT Project in the live Phone-in program named Hello Baliraja where the experts of the subject are required to answer the live querries made by the farmers through telephone call. There was a huge response of the farming community across the district.  

Visitors to the Vermicompost Unit at KVK and farmers field:

   

  1. The Deputy Director General (Extension), ICAR Dr. P. Das and Asstt Director General Dr BS Hansra visited the KVK and its vermicompost unit both at its farm and at the farmers field who expressed satisfaction over the rapid adoption of the vermicompost technology among the rural youths and women.
  2. The Minister for Agriculture, Govt. of Andhra Pradesh Mr. Reddy visited the vermicompost unit at the farmers’ field in the village Kolhar and observed the work done by the farmers minutely.
  3. The Deputy Director of Agriculture, Govt of Goa who visited various farmers vermicomposting unit in villages, also made the visit.
  1. Chief Scientist of 15 KVKs in Maharashtra visited the KVK vermicompost units at the farmers’ field in the village and observed the work done by the farmers on it minutely.

5.   The Volunter Vikash Vahini farmer’s club members of the State Bihar, Punjab, Haryana, UP, MP, Goa, Jharkhand and West Bengal visited the KVK vermicompost unit and vermicompost units at the farmers’ field in the village and observed the work done by the farmers on it minutely.

6.            Commissioner of Agriculture, Maharashtra State, visited KVK,s  Bio-conotrol lab and appreciated work on the  the bio-agents production and use. 

7.      Minister of Commerce and Heavy Industries, Mauritius, Mr. Premdas Kunju visited the KVK, Bio-control Lab and appreciated work on the bio-agents production and use.

8.      Various officers from Agriculture Deptt have visited the vermicompost units of the SC/ST beneficiaries.