Global Advanced Research Journal of Agricultural Science (GARJAS) ISSN: 2315-5094

July 2014 Vol. 3(7): pp. 179-185

Copyright © 2014 Global Advanced Research Journals

 

Full Length Research Paper

Policy Advocacy for Climate Smart Agriculture in Millets: An Initiative for Ensuring Food Security in Tribal Communities of Koraput Tract, Odisha, India

Chaudhury Shripati Mishra, Trinath Taraputia, Benudhara Suchen

 

M. S. Swaminathan Research Foundation, Jeypore, Koraput, Odisha, India

*Corresponding Author's Email: csmishra2009@gmail.com

 Accepted 27 June, 2014

 

Abstract

Ensuring food and nutrition security for the fast growing global population is a major challenge for the present agricultural production systems. Finger millet (Eleusine coracana) and little millet (Panicum sumatrense) serve as major cereal crops in the undulating terrain of Koraput tract of Kundra block, Odisha state, India providing food and nutrition security to native tribal communities. This section of the Eastern Ghat mountain range is inhabited by Poraja, Kandha andPenthia tribal communities following traditional agronomic practices with low productivity. In recent times, uncertain monsoon, declining soil fertility, lack of irrigation facilities, increased pest and disease incidences, high input costs in agriculture, drudgery in farm operations and lack of necessary support from the State Government of Odisha and the Government of India have threatened millet cultivation and the regional food security in this hilly tract. Realising the challenges associated with sustainability of millet cultivation in the changing agroclimatic and socioeconomic scenarios, research was designed to introduce climate smart agriculture in millet cultivation involving 243 households belonging to three tribal communities. The research initiatives focused on efficient water utilisation, soil fertility management, affordable farm mechanisation and the selection and promotion of climate resilient varieties of millets through participatory field trials over three years. Findings from the benchmark survey, the impact assessment survey and periodic agronomic data highlight the need for promotion and adoption of climate smart agriculture in millets for greater sustainability. Sharing the outcomes of the research initiatives with the scientific as well as the tribal farming communities, policy recommendations were developed and disseminated at regional, national and international levels involving all stakeholders such as not for profit organisations, government agencies, the scientific community, print and electronic media, funding agencies, traders and farmers with a view toward favourable policy formulation to ensure sustainable agriculture while enhancing food and nutrition security in the ancient tribal tracts of Eastern India.

Keywords: Climate smart agriculture, millets, food security.

 

 

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