Technology and Extension:
Current Status, Difficulties
and Likely Solutions
Bihar Agricultural Management and Extension Training InstituteBihar Agricultural Management and Extension Training Institute
(BAMETI), Patna(BAMETI), Patna
Presentation in Meeting of Steering Group on AgriculturePresentation in Meeting of Steering Group on Agriculture
State Planning Board, Soochana Bhawan, PatnaState Planning Board, Soochana Bhawan, Patna
June 2007June 2007
Technology & Extension:
Post independence, single minded focus on removing
shortages and self reliance for basic cereal crops
Research system served this purpose by delivering
dramatic productivity increases by introduction of new
varieties and use of chemicals for nutrition and protection
Training & Visit (T&V) Extension system successfully
managed technology transfer to the farmers
It was believed that “Market Forces” could not adequately
address the needs of both farmers and consumers.
Regulatory framework was designed to circumvent the
Historical Technology Dissemination Model
• No market risk for the farmer – Support price system
• Firm contract with the government
• Neither the research system nor the farmer required any connect with the consumer
and its demands.
ICAR R&D system &
FarmerFarmer MandisMandis AggregatorsAggregators
Burdened with this baggage of historical success - search for the new paradigmBurdened with this baggage of historical success - search for the new paradigm
Why the need for the new paradigm?
Falling trend in growth rate of agriculture.
Productivity increases are not keeping pace with the
rising population trends.
Falling water tables & rising soil salinity.
Soil degradation due to intensive chemical usage.
Piling food grain stocks and increased dependence
on oil seed & oil imports.
Demand on R&D system to deliver as per
"increased income aspirations” of the farmers.
India’s factor price advantage & diverse agro-
climatic conditions, not leveraged to become a
player in the international market.
Myths about Agricultural Technology & Extension
R&D System is not delivering
Extension system has collapsed
Need for increased role for private sector
Farmers are not willing to change
State Government are not responsive
However the Reality is
R&D system has the knowledge base but lacks means of transfer to the farm
Farmer is willing to change, can take technology risk provided he is
insulated from the market risk.
No public support for new initiative leading to collapse of the T&V
Few Private sector players operating in limited pockets at best equipped to
play the role of facilitators – NOT YET READY TO LEAD.
Some aggressive state agendas neutralized by inertia in other states.
Framework for Crafting the Research Agenda
R&D agenda should be driven by market demand. Links with the Private
sector can fill in this gap.
Benchmark with the best in the world
Identify regions and crops where we can be better than the best
Evaluate nationally & globally available varieties to select candidates for
Adopt and develop package of practices which are locally relevant and
within the resource base of the farmer
Maintain focus on optimizing water usage and rationalized chemical inputs
to build sustainability
Public and private partnership with input companies on the basic research
“Redefine research agenda to be in-tune with market demand & leverageRedefine research agenda to be in-tune with market demand & leverage
India’s resource base on a sustainable formatIndia’s resource base on a sustainable format.”
Only TECHNOLOGY which delivers HIGHER INCOMES for the farmers will SUCCEED!Only TECHNOLOGY which delivers HIGHER INCOMES for the farmers will SUCCEED!
A Possible Roadmap
Leverage Bihar’s diverse and favourable agro climatic conditions to create:
“Specialized” “Regional” production centers :
Only way of maintaining competitiveness in a world focused on SPECIALIZATION!Only way of maintaining competitiveness in a world focused on SPECIALIZATION!
production centers RegionRegionCropCrop
Nutrition/Protection PlanNutrition/Protection Plan
Farmer’s CapabilityFarmer’s CapabilityWater availabilityWater availability
Market LinkageMarket Linkage
Technology Transfer Enablers
Evaluation of promising varieties and hybrids- short listing selection
Blueprint for agricultural practices after adapting to local conditions,
to suit intellectual & financial means of the farmer
Multi locational trials including at farmers’ fields
Evaluation of farmer economics model
The extension services team - selection and training
Farmer education program
R & D Activities
Ensure market and predictable pricing
Timing the harvest to optimize the returns
Post harvest management to ensure quality
Prompt farmer payment system
Ensure “adequate financing” to fund the inputs
What should be the pattern of engagement ?
It has been seen elsewhere that successful
commercialization of technology works because there is a
As yet, no established demand for Agricultural technology
by the private sector.
“Public- Private Partnerships” rather than pure
“Commercial engagements” need to be developed.
Involve private sector in drawing up specific work plan of
Leverage both public & private sector resources for
reaching out to the farmer
Government market interventions to support new
technologies and diversification
Challenges before the Extension SystemChallenges before the Extension System
To respond to food and nutritional security, poverty
alleviation, diversifying market demand, export
opportunities and environment
Effective linkages between production and agro-
processing for value added products
Sustainable management of natural resources – land and
Public funding in extension is under considerable strain,
getting private funds need of the hour.
But there are Constraints!
Extension programs heavily top-down:
Extension field staff, primarily handing out central government
funded inputs and subsidies, rather than assisting farmers
to increase their incomes
By focusing on staple food crops, extension is mostly supply–
driven rather than being demand– driven or market–driven
Lack of attention to farmer problems; extension system not
accountable to farmers
Inadequate technical & managerial capacity, especially
among the field-level extension staff posted in the districts and
Absence of any mechanisms to empower farmers
Weak involvement with the private sector
Weak Research-Extension-Farmer-Market linkages
Key Elements of the New Strategy
Shift from food security (i.e., Green Revolution) to
diversifying into high-value products
Country now self-sufficient in basic food crops
There is a growing domestic market for high-value products; dairy, eggs,
fresh fish, fruits and vegetables, processed food etc.
To implement this new strategy, farmers had to be
organized, trained and linked to these new domestic
and international markets
Implementing organization pilot tested under NATP
was the Agricultural Technology Management Agency
(In Hindi, ATMA mean “soul;” therefore ATMA has capacity to become the soul of
agricultural development in Bihar.)
ATMA was the Mechanism Used toATMA was the Mechanism Used to
Decentralize Extension and DiversifyDecentralize Extension and Diversify
Which is Critical to Building a “Market-Driven” Extension SystemWhich is Critical to Building a “Market-Driven” Extension System
Regional and urban market opportunities tend to be
“location-specific;” therefore, extension planning must
The ATMA model pilot-tested between 1998-2005;
now the Government of India is implementing this
“market-driven” extension or ATMA model nationwide
in 252 districts and it is being up scaled to cover the
whole country in the XIth Plan.
All the districts of Bihar now covered under ATMA
Steps in Implementing the Strategy
Conduct PRA and then develop a Strategic Research
and Extension Plan (SREP) for each Project District
Identify and evaluate “Success Stories”
Determine most promising products/markets
Organize farmers into groups
Farmer Interest Groups (FIGs) at village level & Farmer
Associations (FAs) at block, and Farmers Federations (FFs)
at district & state levels
Farmer leaders are critical to the success of FIGs
Exposure visits and demonstrations are used to motivate
Investigate markets to identify interested
manufacturers or wholesale markets
(i.e., avoid traders; shorten the supply chain to avoid middlemen.)
Building Social CapitalBuilding Social Capital
VIS-À-VIS MARKET DEVELOPMENTVIS-À-VIS MARKET DEVELOPMENT
Two basic types:
Implementing the Strategy (cont.)
Collaborate with research (e.g. SAUs or KVKs) to
develop and test production and post-harvest
technologies and then train FIG members to produce
to contract specifications.
Public-Private Partnerships are emphasized at block
level; emphasis is on “contract farming” between FIGs
and companies (e.g. Pepsi and Hindustan Lever are
contracting for basmati rice and vegetables for processing)
Some other companies are doing this on a smaller scale in
Bihar ( Aromatic crops, exotic vegetables, organic farming etc.)
Example-Lemon grass oil production Flow Chart
from CIMAP, Lucknow
or FFDC, Kannauj
Root stock Growing in
nursery in 1/5th area of
Transplanting 6-8 month
in the field
Harvesting for distillation
every 2-3 months depending
on growth of crop
Up to 5 years
total oil yield
120 kg per year
Krishna and CKP25
Varieties most suited
Popularization and technical
support from ATMA, Patna
and KVK, Barh
Oil sold to processors
after 12 Months
to 5 years
Up to 5 years
Performance Indicators of ATMA Programme in Bihar
Impact Indicators Baseline* Actual*
Absolute Income Gain In Project Districts 61256 68797
Absolute Income Gain In Non-Project
Net Gain In Household Income In Project
Districts household Over Non Project
Per Household Annual Income
Project Districts 89049 99423
Non-Project Districts 93542 85331
Project Districts 145 196
Non-Project Districts 140 174
Benefits Of Adopting New Technologies (%)
Increase In Crop Yield 13
Increase In Farm Income 15
* IIM Lucknow data on M&E
Conclusion: Key Elements of this NewConclusion: Key Elements of this New
Extension StrategyExtension Strategy
Refocus some research and extension resources to
high-value crops/products, including market
Decentralize extension planning and decision-making;
begin by focusing on local and regional market
Empowering Farmers—organize and train farmers so
they can link to high-value markets; they must get
organized to achieve economies of scale and to
increase market power.
Reasons for Success
Farmer friendly approach to ExtensionFarmer friendly approach to Extension
Partnership with Private Sector
ATMA Single Window delivery point for Technology.
Diversification dictated by market demand only.
Judicious Use of Mass media.
R-E-F-M linkages strengthened with primary focus on
Revitalizing the farmers through capacity building,
Using farmers and private entrepreneurs as Extension
Group focus in all the interventions.
Effective use of NGO’s, & private sector.
Sustainability given due importance, with cost sharing
being the key word in most of the interventions.
ATMA Model : LessonsATMA Model : Lessons LearntLearnt
Autonomy, financial flexibility and direct fundingAutonomy, financial flexibility and direct funding
resulted in better outcome.resulted in better outcome.
Better coordination, Convergence, pooling ofBetter coordination, Convergence, pooling of
resources and integrated delivery of demand drivenresources and integrated delivery of demand driven
Priority settings through the farmers involvementPriority settings through the farmers involvement
(SREP , GB and FIAC).(SREP , GB and FIAC).
Strong Research-Extension-Farmer-MarketStrong Research-Extension-Farmer-Market
(R-E-F-M) Linkage.(R-E-F-M) Linkage.
ATMA an effective platform for Public-Private-ATMA an effective platform for Public-Private-
SREP as a tool for bottom-up planningSREP as a tool for bottom-up planning
Capacity building through need-based trainings,Capacity building through need-based trainings,
exposure visits, demonstrations, etc.exposure visits, demonstrations, etc.