BHUBANESWAR: Odisha Government has planned to introduce a set of new operational guidelines for organic farming in order to prevent use of synthetically compounded fertilizers, pesticides, growth regulators and genetically modified organisms.
The districts selected for organic farming are Kandhamal, Kalahandi, Rayagada, Gajapati, Nayagarh, Koraput, Mayurbhanj and Keonjhar. An area of 250 hectare (ha) will be allotted for the farming in each district.
An official of Directorate of Horticulture said the draft operational guideline for organic farming to be implemented under the State Plan has been submitted to the Government and is awaiting approval.
“The project will be implemented from 2019-20 to 2025-26 and the State has proposed to spend `178 crore in next five years. Organic farming will be promoted preferably in hilly, tribal and rain-fed areas to augment farmers’ income,” he said.
However, it has been decided to implement the programme under Paramparagat Krishi Vikas Yojana (PKVY) in cluster approach till the guideline is approved.As per the PKVY modalities, the cluster formation for organic farming group, training and exposure visit will be promoted through service providers who will be selected in a transparent manner.
The selected service provides will engage lead resource persons, packaging and licensing of organic produce, organise fairs and undertake publicity besides local marketing initiatives.Of farm and on farm input subsidy will be released to the farmers’ account in DBT mode for nursery raising, organic input procurement and vermin composting.
“Each group (20 ha cluster) will be provided `10 lakh and it will be released in three phases. An area of 1500 ha (75 clusters) will be considered for organic farming this year. As per the budget provision, `3 crore will be spent during 2019-20,” the official added.
Meanwhile, the directorate has sought proposals from interested agencies by January 20 for certification of organic farming under the Mission for Integrated Development of Horticulture (MIDH).Last year, the Government had introduced Odisha Organic Farming Policy in a bid to make farming climate resilient, reduce farmers’ risks and enhance their income. The policy has been framed to promote organic farming and provide market for the products.