RANCHI: Farmers who returned on Friday from a four-day trip to Israel have lauded Israel's commitment to getting maximum produce by using water efficiently. The farmers said they had learnt how to use traditional farming methods in a scientific way to increase their production.
A team of 26 farmers was sent to Israel by the state government on Sunday to learn modern techniques of farming with limited resources.
"The most remarkable thing is that people in Israel have been getting bumper produce by purchasing water from the government, whereas we in India still lag far behind despite having plenty of water available free of cost. They are making optimum use of water by giving respect to each and every drop of it," said farmer Rajkishor Mahto of Lohardaga.
Whether it is paddy farming, fish farming or dairy farming, every activity is done jointly in a scientific way, utilizing minimum resources after forming a cooperative of at least 100-200 farmers, said Mahto.
"Despite adopting modern scientific ways of farming, they are still practising traditional ways of farming, making minimum use of chemical fertilizers and getting bumper crops. I have learnt that technique and will implement it here to get better produce," said the farmer from Lohardaga. The best part is that they have divided the area into different zones and produce one vegetable or fruit in one zone to prevent unbalanced production so that the rate is retained, he added.
Moreover, they do everything in a planned way to earn maximum foreign currency, in spite of getting the entire produce sold out in their own country.
"Similar efforts must be made here in India so that the fruits and vegetables which get wasted here due to lack of storage facility can be exported to foreign countries in a planned way to earn foreign currency," said Mahto.
Radha Krishna Kevat, a farmer from Saraikela district, said he had learnt how to breed fish even in shallow water.
"It was an eye-opener for me as in India we believe that fish farming can be done only in deep water, but in Israel they do it anywhere, in just 4-5 feet of water, by recycling the water without wasting a single litre of it," said Kevat.
Phuleshwar Mahto of Hazaribagh said dairy farmers in Israel were getting at least four times more milk through traditional means without making any extra effort.
"They simply believe that a cow will give more milk if it is happy, for which they have adopted traditional methods like allowing them to roam in an open space of at least 2-3 acres without tying them with rope, and keep them cool by installing heavy fans around the farm and sprinkle water on them from time to time. They even do not remove cow dung from the farm for at least a year, which works as an insecticide for the cattle, protecting them from disease and enabling them to give more milk," said Mahto.