FARM INNOVATORS AND THEIR ROLE IN AGRICULTURAL EXTENSION

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  • Diversity requires locally-specific practices. Small-scale farmers in Africa live and work under a wide range of ecological, climatic, economic and socio-cultural conditions, and the range of farming systems is similarly diverse, not just across regions or countries but also within districts and even localities. Each farming system has its own dynamics, strengths, challenges and opportunities. In comparison with this diversity, there are very few research scientists and there is simply no way that they can generate the variety of innovations and adaptations required. In the face of this farming diversity, it is wasted effort to try to develop perfected technologies for blanket-like application. Local adaptation and locally specific development of options need to be key elements in any agricultural research and development (ARD) strategy to alleviate poverty in Africa (InterAcademy Council 2004). If scientists recognise and accept this, then they need not spend so much time and money on perfecting technologies and can spend more time on enhancing farmers’ ongoing efforts to adapt extension recommendations to fit local realities.
     
    Rapidly changing conditions require local capacities to adapt quickly. No innovation is permanent – a solution to any one problem does not remain valid from now until eternity. Only change is permanent. Conditions for farmers – also for small-scale farmers in resource-poor areas of Africa – are constantly changing. This is especially the case for those who are trying to link with markets, but also for everyone affected by the emergence of new pests and diseases (not only in plants and livestock but also in human, such as HIV/AIDS), changes in laws and regulations such as in land administration, effects of climate change, and for those who see new opportunities opening up, for example, as a result of infrastructural development. The key to sustainability in farming lies in farmers’ capacities to adapt. They have to adapt more quickly than in the past. Recognising local innovation is a step towards encouraging this process and helping farmers find ways to adapt more quickly by linking up with other actors in the wider innovation system.
  • effective communication: By ensuring that open dialogue exists between farmers and researchers, extension agents can promote the sharing of knowledge between the two groups. The pre-existing knowledge and innovations of farmers are often overlooked by researchers, but are in fact immeasurably useful and functional. By learning what farmers have already done, researchers can help design programs that better fit a specific locale or conditions. Incorporating farmers in the design and implementation of programs will also reassure farmers that their concerns are being met, and will give them a feeling of vested interest in the outcome of their programs, again increasing success rates. In short, the successful design and implementation of programs for farmers depends on the open communication and cooperation between farmers and researchers.
    Social learning: The farmer innovation system approach allows for interactions and integration between stakeholders, resulting in social learning. This enables the stakeholders to identify and recognize their experimentation efforts, responsibilities, strengths and weaknesses, thereby strengthening participation and community innovation processes. Consequently, there is higher adaptation of technologies by farmers. Conversely, the other research actors also learn from the farmers about their farming systems, and about the actual constraints and potentials of the communities.

    Helping resource poor farmers: It quite apparent that all farmers in India were not visibly aided by the green revolution. The transfer-of-technology (T.O.T) approach of conventional research had been quite effective in regions that are relatively homogeneous in terms of agroeconomics as well as socioeconomics (Jiggins, 1989). The problem, however, is that transfer-of-technology leaves much to be desired in areas that are unstable or highly diverse, variable or complex; often areas with many small farms. In these areas, knowledge of localized conditions or special needs is imperative (Jiggins, 1989).
    Farmers as innovators: An important realization for researchers to make is that farmers too carry out their own form of research and that they have already acquired an immense amount of knowledge that could benefit researchers (Chambers). It is imperative that researchers overcome the common misconception that farmers in resource-poor areas have little to contribute in the way of advancement, whether scientific or technological. Quite the contrary is actually the case. When farmers are strapped for resources and trying to make ends meet, they are often pushed to their creative peak (Chambers). These farmers excel in experimentation, adaptation and innovation because they must and because they have little to lose by taking on a new risk. The amount of innovativeness that can be accredited to small farmers, especially those that are thought of as traditional or old-fashioned, is endless.
  • It is clear from the study that farmers possess considerable knowledge about the environment in which they farm, the crops they cultivate and the animals they keep. While it should not be assumed that indigenous knowledge alone will provide a solution to the many challenges faced by smallholder farmers, farmers should be acknowledged as the custodians of valuable farming knowledge that needs to be recognised, validated and used more generally.
    Although not all innovations require further research, existing successful farmer innovation is worthy of wider dissemination. Researchers and farmers should collaborate in participatory research to find answers to specific problems, build on existing knowledge and verify farmers’ innovations for effectiveness and safety.
    Current models of farmer support are unidirectional and tend to be based on the Training and Visit System, where
the agricultural extension officers communicate a message to farmers. There is a need for
dialogue in which farmers, extension workers and other stakeholders are involved in finding mechanisms that build on farmers’ knowledge and practice and address their needs more directly. 
We are in fact calling for a reorientation of agricultural research and development towards:
  • FARM INNOVATORS AND THEIR ROLE IN AGRICULTURAL EXTENSION

    1. 1. 17/05/2014 Department of Agricultural Extension 1
    2. 2. FARM INNOVATORS AND THEIR ROLE IN AGRICULTURAL EXTENSION PRESENTATION BY GOPALA, Y.M PALB-1028 III Ph.D (Agril. Extn.)
    3. 3. Introduction • Agriculture is one of the oldest professions practiced over centuries. • The Indian farmers consistently tried to make this occupation more efficient and cost effective which resulted in numerous innovations. • Obviously, these innovations have supported food security of the country. 17/05/2014 Department of Agricultural Extension 3
    4. 4. Contd… • Farmers have done commendable work on Low cost processing technologies Germplasm conservation Postharvest management Value addition. • Since, farm innovations are evolved under specific agro- climatic and socio-economic conditions such innovations have been widely adopted and are sustained. 17/05/2014 Department of Agricultural Extension 4
    5. 5. NEED OF THE HOUR • The innovations in agriculture from farmer innovators need to be validated, integrated and scaled up. • Hence, ICAR has come out with a popular slogan called as ‘Farmers First’ to reduce the gap exists in the quality of research output required at the farm level. 17/05/2014 Department of Agricultural Extension 5
    6. 6. OBJECTIVES OF SEMINAR 17/05/2014 Department of Agricultural Extension 6 1 • To understand the meaning of farm innovators and innovations. 2 • To study the role of farm innovators as para- extension workers 3 • To discuss the challenges confronting the farm innovators 4 • To review the studies related to farm innovators
    7. 7. FARM INNOVATORS “Farmer innovators are the individuals or groups within a given locality who discover or develop and apply improved ways of managing the available resources, building on and expanding the boundaries of their indigenous knowledge” 17/05/2014 Department of Agricultural Extension 7
    8. 8. Farm innovation “The knowledge that grows within a social group, incorporating learning from own experience over generations, but also external knowledge internalized within the local ways of thinking and doing”. 17/05/2014 Department of Agricultural Extension 8
    9. 9. Characteristics of innovators Innovators are, • Willing to take risk • Have the highest social class • They are very social • Have closest contact to scientific sources • Interaction with other innovators 17/05/2014 Department of Agricultural Extension 9
    10. 10. Farm innovation development process 17/05/2014 Department of Agricultural Extension 10
    11. 11. Classification of farm innovations 1. Innovation as application of knowledge 2. Innovation by type  Innovation as application of knowledge • New processes • New markets • New organizational arrangements or practices • New designs or arts of work 17/05/2014 Department of Agricultural Extension 11
    12. 12. Contd…. Innovation by type • Changes in technology systems Ex. Seed drill to seed cum fertilizer drill 17/05/2014 Department of Agricultural Extension 12
    13. 13. Condition necessitate the farmer led innovation 1. Diversity requires locally-specific practices 2. Rapidly changing conditions 3. High cost of purchasing improved technologies 4. Non availability of the technology 17/05/2014 Department of Agricultural Extension 13
    14. 14. Role of farm innovators as para-extension workers 1. Farm innovators serve as opinion leaders. 2. Serve as a feedback mechanism for technology refinement. 3. Source of input for researchers. 4. Increases the success of programs through mobilization of farmers. 5. Promotion of the knowledge sharing among the fellow farmers. 17/05/2014 Department of Agricultural Extension 14
    15. 15. 1. Farm innovators serves as opinion leaders • Farm innovators will be first to adopt the new technology • Demonstrate the feasibility of the new technology • Farm innovators pocess the knowledge regarding various aspects of the farming. 17/05/2014 Department of Agricultural Extension 15
    16. 16. 2. Farm innovators serves as feedback mechanism for technology refinement • Feedback from the farm innovators helps in technology refinement. • Feedback helps in development of location specific technology development 17/05/2014 Department of Agricultural Extension 16
    17. 17. 3. Source of input for researchers • Farm innovators have the knowledge regarding the deficiency of the technology. • Farm innovators helps the research to set research priorities. 17/05/2014 Department of Agricultural Extension 17
    18. 18. 4. Increases the success of programs through mobilization of farmers. • Farm innovators mobilize the farmers which will enhance the peoples participation in the programmes. • Consideration of farm innovators in developmental prgrammes will increase the participation of the fellow farmers. 17/05/2014 Department of Agricultural Extension 18
    19. 19. 5. Promotion of the knowledge sharing among the farmers • Farm innovators can serve as medium to share the information about technology developed in the research system. • Information regarding the developmental programmes • Information regarding different marketing opportunities. 17/05/2014 Department of Agricultural Extension 19
    20. 20. Importance of linking farm innovators with research and extension system • Effective communication between extension agents and farmers through innovators. • Helps in social learning of the stakeholders. • Promotion of farmers research. • Helping resource poor farmers. 17/05/2014 Department of Agricultural Extension 20
    21. 21. Effect of farm innovation on rate of adoption of technology 17/05/2014 Department of Agricultural Extension 21 • Increased relative advantage • High Compatibility • Lower Complexity • Easily trialable • Enhanced Observability
    22. 22. Recent approaches to encourage farm innovators in India • Farm Innovators meet-2010 by ICAR • Farm Innovation and Promotion Fund (FIPF) of NABARD • Farm innovations museum by KVK, Kannur. • ‘Farmers first’ project of ICAR. 17/05/2014 Department of Agricultural Extension 22
    23. 23. National farm innovators meet-2010 • Held at JSS KVK, Suttur of Mysore district • 200 farm innovations were depicted • 60 farm innovators displayed live specimens and models 17/05/2014 Department of Agricultural Extension 23
    24. 24. Farm Innovation and Promotion Fund (FIPF) • The Fund has been created in NABARD with an initial corpus of Rs.5 crores from out of its operating surplus in the year 2004-05. Objectives of the Fund 1. To demonstrate new concepts in agriculture and farm sector. 2. To extend support for developing proto-types and for further development to make it commercial. 17/05/2014 Department of Agricultural Extension 24
    25. 25. Eligibility for getting fund 1. New and viable concepts in agriculture and allied sectors. 2. Development of proto-types to make it commercial. 3. Activities connected with marketing, dissemination of knowledge relating to new products/ processes, etc. 4. Obtaining patents for innovative technology/designs/products/ processes. 17/05/2014 Department of Agricultural Extension 25
    26. 26. Farm innovation museum • Krishi Vigyan Kendra, Kannur established farm innovation museum at Panniyur. • Named after innovative farmer late Joseph, an innovative farmer and the inventor of the coconut climbing machine. Objectives 1. Aims at highlighting the important innovations of the district 2. Motivating fellow farmers to adopt the innovations. 17/05/2014 Department of Agricultural Extension 26
    27. 27. Advantages of farm innovation museum • The museum offers a forum for the farmer researchers to share their findings with other fellow farmer. • Visitors could learn more about the inventions for commercializing and popularizing. • Serve as an alternative source of farm information. 17/05/2014 Department of Agricultural Extension 27
    28. 28. “FARMERS FIRST” • Research system is not getting adequate feedback to plan and conduct demand driven research. • Purpose is the involvement of farmers throughout the technology development process. • To reduce the gap exists between the quality of the research out put required at farm level. 17/05/2014 Department of Agricultural Extension 28
    29. 29. FOCUS OF FARMERS FIRST 1. Enriching Farmers –Scientist interface 2. Technology Assemblage, Application and feedback 3. Partnership and Institutional Building 4. Content Mobilization 17/05/2014 Department of Agricultural Extension 29
    30. 30. OBJECTIVES OF FARMERS FIRST • Technology development based on feedback with the participation of farmers and landless for enhancing production. • To build a network of linkages with different entities • Facilitating access of information, technology and marketability of produce for higher returns. • To identify and integrate economically viable and socially acceptable entrepreneurial activities. 17/05/2014 Department of Agricultural Extension 30
    31. 31. Challenges confronting the farm innovators • Lack of accommodative attitude of outsiders • Lack of adequate opportunity for farmers to decide on research priorities • Lack of financial support • Lack of recognition, and • Illiteracy 17/05/2014 Department of Agricultural Extension 31
    32. 32. Implication for extension through farm innovators • Recognition of knowledge and practice of farmers. • Dissemination of successful farmer innovations. • Facilitation of increased dialogue between actors involved in agricultural extension. • Creating access to resources for innovative farmers • . 17/05/2014 Department of Agricultural Extension 32
    33. 33. • Conducting study on system interface and policy discourses: • Offering alternatives to compare with current practices or local innovations. • Up scaling of the technologies developed by farm innovators 17/05/2014 Department of Agricultural Extension 33
    34. 34. REVIEW OF STUDIES RELATED TO FARM INNOVATORS 17/05/2014 Department of Agricultural Extension 34
    35. 35. Study-1 Title of the study: “An analysis of behavior of Krishi prashathi awardees and their influence on neighboring farmers” Author: MANJULA, N. Year of study conducted: 2002 17/05/2014 Department of Agricultural Extension 35
    36. 36. Methodology Locale of the study: Bangalore rural, Bangalore urban and kolar districts were selected for the study Sampling size: 22 taluk level ragi krushi prashathi awardee farmers and 108 neighbouring farmers. 17/05/2014 Department of Agricultural Extension 36
    37. 37. Table. 1. Extent of influence of awardees on knowledge level of neighbouring farmers on cultivation practices of ragi Sl. No. Recommended practices Knowledge of farmers Number Per cent 1 Advantages of ploughing across the slope 20 18.52 2 Method of bunding for red soil 15 13.89 3 Improved variety for late kharif 97 89.81 4 Usefulness of seed treatment 23 21.29 5 Correct time of FYM application 12 11.11 6 Method of sowing for rainfed kharif 22 20.37 7 Recommended quantity of chemical fertilizers 98 90.74 8 Time of top dressing 59 54.63 9 Important diseases 5 4.63 10 Expected yield 101 93.52 17/05/2014 Department of Agricultural Extension 37
    38. 38. Table-2. Extent of influence of awardees on yield level of neighbouring farmers Yield (qtl/ha) 1997-98 1998-99 1999-2000 2000-2001 N % N % N % N % Up to 30 70 64.81 62 57.41 65 60.19 30 27.78 30-35 20 18.52 35 32.41 31 28.70 32 29.63 35-40 18 16.67 9 8.33 11 10.19 24 22.22 40-45 - - 2 1.85 1 0.92 8 7.40 Above 45 - - - - - 14 12.97 17/05/2014 Department of Agricultural Extension 38
    39. 39. Table-3. Extent of adoption of recommended cultivation practices of ragi by neighboring farmers Sl. No. Recommended practices Full adoption Partial adoption -Non adoption N % N % N % 1 Ploughing across the slope 20 18.52 - - - 2 Variety 80 74.08 - - - 3 Month of sowing 40 37.10 - - - 4 Seed rate 28 25.93 - - 35 32.41 5 Seed treatment 23 21.30 - - - 6 Method of sowing 22 20.37 - - - 7 FYM application 32 2.63 - - 14 12.96 8 Chemical fertilizers 46 42.59 - - 33 30.56 9 Top dressing 31 28.70 - - 25 24.56 10 Plant protection chemical 0 0 - - -
    40. 40. Implications of the study 1. The awardee farmers can be used by the extension personnel in various extension activities to educate the other farmers 2. There is a need to implement schemes such as best farmer in all the crops to motivate the farmers. 17/05/2014 Department of Agricultural Extension 40
    41. 41. Case study-1: Two Wheeler Mounted Sprayer Shri Chandragouda M. Lingadal Harti, Gadag, Karnataka • Age : 40 years • Landholding : 2 ha • Farming : 20 years experience 17/05/2014 Department of Agricultural Extension 41
    42. 42. Description of innovation • Compression pump is mounted on Bajaj M-80 two wheeler to generate pressure. • Two water cans each of 25 lit capacity are fixed on either side of the carrier. • Horizontal pipe having 4 nozzles is fixed at the rear end for spraying field crops and 2 guns having 30 feet pipe length for spray orchard crops. 17/05/2014 Department of Agricultural Extension 42
    43. 43. Practical utility of innovation • Innovative sprayer can cover 12 ha in bengalgram, 6 ha in chilli, 8 ha in cotton per day. • Cost of sprayer is Rs 18000. 17/05/2014 Department of Agricultural Extension 43
    44. 44. Impact created by innovation • Effective for uniform spray and solves labour problem for spraying. • The sprayer can cover 6-12 ha depending on the type of crop, thus saving the cost of labour. • This sprayer is being used by the farmers of Harti and surrounding villages on hire basis @ Rs 150 per acre 17/05/2014 Department of Agricultural Extension 44
    45. 45. Recognition • Received award and certificate from UAS, Dharwad • Recognised by AIR, Dharwad 17/05/2014 Department of Agricultural Extension 45
    46. 46. Case-2: Village Level Fodder Bank Shri Madhava Reddy Karakampalli Gundlakattamanchi, Chittoor, Andhra Pradesh • Age : 50 years • Education : 9 std • Landholding : 2 ha • Farming : 40 years experience 17/05/2014 Department of Agricultural Extension 46
    47. 47. • In 2 acres of his land Shri K. Madhava Reddy is raising 85 fodder varieties i.e. Guinea, Napier and tree species. • For the past 12 years he is doing research on all these varieties and identified 40 {Guinea (20 sps), Napier (15 sps) and Tree species (15)} • He not only works on cultivation of different species but also tested the palatability and yield improvement in milch animals. 17/05/2014 Department of Agricultural Extension 47 Practical utility of innovation
    48. 48. • Source of planting material to farmers, research farms, and other private Dairy farms. • He supplied seeds to about 10000 families in the district. • He also motivates the dairy farmers to take up fodder production through training programmes, radio talks, TV Shows and news items. 17/05/2014 Department of Agricultural Extension 48 Impact created by innovation
    49. 49. • Progressive Farmer Award from IARI, New Delhi, • Best Farmer Award by State Farmers Federation, • Best farmer award by Village Milk Society • Certificate of Merit from the District Collector for fodder production. 17/05/2014 Department of Agricultural Extension 49 Recognition
    50. 50. Case-3: Mango tress date back to Tippu era Syed Ghani khan, Kirugavalu village, Malavalli (T), Mandya, Karnataka Age: 39 Landholding: 20 acres Education: B.Sc in archeology 17/05/2014 Department of Agricultural Extension 50
    51. 51. Description of innovation • Preserved 112 mango tress of more than 200 years old. • He also preserved native paddy varieties. • Protection of plant varieties and farmers right authority started registered all the exotic varieties. 17/05/2014 Department of Agricultural Extension 51
    52. 52. Impact of the innovation • Mr. Syed is selling the fruits to Dubai and Abu Dhabi. • He is planning to take up propagation of native mango varieties. • Provide training farmers and students about local varieties 17/05/2014 Department of Agricultural Extension 52
    53. 53. RECOGNITION • Mr. Khan honored with “Plant Genome Savior Farmers” award in 2012 17/05/2014 Department of Agricultural Extension 53
    54. 54. Conclusion Technologies generated by innovative farmers are more sustainable and adoptable compared to technologies generated by research system. Extension agency should device the ways and means of taking these technologies to the relevant farmers of the region. In case of Karnataka there is a need to identify farm innovators as para extension workers at the grassroots level. 17/05/2014 Department of Agricultural Extension 54
    55. 55. 17/05/2014 Department of Agricultural Extension 55

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