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Posted at: Feb 3, 2017, 12:41 AM; last updated: Feb 3, 2017, 12:41 AM (IST)

CM to launch chemical-free farming project today

Vishal Joshi

Tribune News Service

Kurukshetra, February 2

The state government has identified nearly 1,000 acres in 10 districts to boost organised chemical-free farming. Under the project, two clusters of 50 acres have been developed to reduce the use of chemical fertilisers and pesticides in the identified fields. Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar will launch the project in Kurukshetra tomorrow.

Officials of the state Agriculture Department said land areas in the vicinity of gaushalas with adequate number of cattle had been earmarked for the project to ensure adequate supply of farm yard manure (FYM).

Sources said a small section of progressive farmers was already into organic farming and the state government had planned to take conventional farming to a larger scale gradually.

Karamchand, Deputy Director, Agriculture, told The Tribune today it had been decided that not more than 2.25 acres of a farmer would be covered under the pilot scheme. He said 20-25 enterprising farmers in different blocks would be benefitted in the phase. More areas would be brought under chemical-free cultivation in the state in the next stage, he said.

Besides specialised training, farmers will be taken for field visits in different states to showcase success stories of organic farming. “Organic farming has a set protocol where lands are gradually converted into certified organic land by implementing practices and principles as per guidelines laid down in the National Programme for Organic Production. The government will support farmers with technical knowhow to competitive sale of organic produce in the market and all other aspects,” said Karamchand. Officials said Sikkim had set an example in the promotion of traditional farming after it became India’s first fully organic state in December.

Organic farming can be adopted for cultivating sugarcane, paddy, cotton and other commercial crops, said department sources.

“There is a market of consumers keen to cultivate produces free from chemicals. It is a gradual process and Sikkim has proved organic farming can be adopted fully by supporting farmers,” said an official. The pilot project of implementing organic farming will be introduced in clusters of Kurukshetra, Kaithal, Jind, Hisar, Sirsa, Narnaul, Mewat, Palwal, Gurugram and Jhajjar districts.

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