CHENNAI: The "Tamil Nadu Organic Farming Mission" will be implemented by the Department of Horticulture on a cluster-based approach with two clusters in each district with a cluster size of 50 hectares, announced Agriculture Minister MRK Panneerselvam today in the State Assembly.
Presenting the agriculture budget for 2022-23, the Minister said "It is programmed to undertake promotional activities such as creating awareness on cultivation practices through special training and exposure visits, giving information on soil health, advice on bio-fertilizer production units and distribution of inputs, creation of a residual analytical laboratory for testing the produces, registering with Organic Certification Department etc., at an outlay of Rs.30 crore with Union and State Government fund. Also, cattle shed and vermicompost unit will be set up in coordination with Rural Development."
The Minister said that works are on to increase yields and increase productivity by producing high yielding, drought tolerant and flood-resistant seeds for farmers.
With a view to facilitate easy access to quality seeds and provide advisory on Seed production and Organic Certification to farmers, Integrated Seed Certification Office Complex to accommodate Seed Certification, Seed Inspection and Seed testing will be established in Villupuram and Tiruppur districts at an outlay of Rs.4 crore.
Besides, to ensure the quality of organic produce produced by farmers, 100 per cent assistance for the cost of residue analysis of organic produce will be given. For this purpose, an amount of Rs.12.50 Lakh will be allocated annually.
Organic farmers incur significant expenses for certification and marketing of their organically grown
produces. Hence, Participatory Guarantee System (PGS) will be introduced to facilitate marketing of the organic produce at the national level without incurring any certification fee.
Tamil Nadu Government is focusing on Digitization of Agriculture and introducing the latest software
As part of this, to carry out Seed Certification activities in a swift and transparent manner, "SPECS" software has been developed for providing real-time service to farmers and seed producers. An exclusive mobile application will be developed to integrate the activities of Organic Certification under this software
During 2021-22, 100 Self Help Groups were trained on seed production techniques by the Department of Seed Certification and Organic Certification and Tamil Nadu Agricultural University. Based on the demand, more Self-Help Groups will be trained on Seed production in Cotton, millets etc., during 2022-23.