ALUVA: At the Biofach -2014, the National Centre of Organic farming (NCOF) is on a mission to promote the advantages of organic farming. The NCOF stall attracted a large number of farmers, underscoring the depth of awareness among them on organic farming.
“We, at the NCOF conduct quality checks, promote organic farming, provide training to government offices and develop new strains that provide higher outputs,” said Dr Manisha Ravi of the NCOF.
“The various advantages of taking up organic farming are increased soil health, sustainable production and better prices for the produce in both the domestic and international markets.
“There is a great demand for organic food items among the health-conscious new generation. Now-a-days, there is hardly any big difference between the prices of organic produces and conventional produces,” she said.
If a farmer wants to go organic, he/she will have to wait for a few years, as the inorganic dosages have to be replaced by organic inputs. Once the process is complete, the farmer would get a certificate.” she said.
In a move to promote the organic culture further, the government has increased subsidies for units that produce bio-pesticides, bio-fertilisers and agro waste compost, under the Capital Investment Subsidy Scheme (CISS). The subsidies will be distributed through the NABARD.
More than 180 centres will be set up to provide training on organic farming concepts to government officers, every year.
She rates Kerala as more advanced in organic production than the other states.
“Most of the organic fertilisers are produced in Kerala. Though it is not in a fully advanced stage yet it is evolving,” she added.