With reformations in the agriculture and allied sectors, ‘Agripreneurship’ has been the buzzword for Jammu and Kashmir since the beginning of the year.
According to a report, Jammu and Kashmir stands among the country’s top five states and Union Territories in income generation through agriculture. The J-K administration has focused on the scientific improvement of farming systems and creating market-oriented policies to make agriculture profitable over the past two years.
The easy credit system, subsidized quality seeds, free seminars and workshops on scientific agriculture and marketing of agricultural produce, and assistance in selling the final product are a few of the ways the government is boosting the farming culture of UT.
“The results have been so overwhelming that youngsters have opted out of well-paying private and government jobs to join their parents on the farm. With the stabilized atmosphere, the business has been smooth and the profit trajectory is high, except for a few weather glitches that are outside human control,” the report stated.
Mushroom cultivation is the latest farming activity that is gaining momentum in the region. Under the watch of Rashtriya Krishi Vikas Yojna, a National Agriculture Development Programme, mushroom growing is gaining popularity because of the low efforts and perfect climactic conditions that are required in its cultivation. The mushroom growers are supplied with 50 per cent subsidized quality seeds, technical knowledge, and training.
According to the report, it requires little maintenance so it is perfect for small families and homemaking women who are looking to earn some extra cash.
Forest dwellers in the Jammu Shivalik region are being trained in mushroom collection, processing, and growing techniques, along with knowledge of market access. The idea is equitable distribution of knowledge and opportunity to uplift people across all regions and social classes, giving them a chance to do better financially.
The Department of Agriculture has created youth groups that will assist farmers with their marketing needs, such as – packaging and labelling, building family brands, setting up websites, handling orders, acquiring the export license and submitting documents, AI, agriculture mechanization, processing, segregating waste for other industrial use, etc.
“The Krishi Vigyan Kendras along with Agricultural universities have reformed the scenery in J-K. These institutes are always on the go, creating new technologies and experimenting with the best methods of production. They keep the farmers up to date with their findings and research and also help to solve their individual problems,” the report stated.
Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha recently urged the NABARD and the banking sector to strongly increase their lending in the agriculture and allied sectors in Jammu and Kashmir.
While chairing a high-level meeting of the J-K Advisory Board for Development of Kisans and J-K’s Agriculture Department officials on November 5, the LG planned a roadmap for holistic development of this sector.
“Subsistence agriculture is a thing of the past. It is a sustainable commercial agri-economy we aim towards. The approach will be community and farmer-centric allowing maximum participation of farmers in decision-making,” he said.