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Society for Elimination of Rural Poverty Community Managed Sustainable Agriculture

The ecological alternatives in agriculture which make best use of local resources have proven to shift the tide in favor of farmers. One such experience is the Non- Pesticidal Management (NPM) of insect pests. Considering the serious problems associated with use of chemical pesticides and also the huge investment costs for small and marginal farmers, Society for Elimination of Rural Poverty (SERP), Indira Kranti Padam, (IKP) decided to upscale the NPM into wider regions through the Federation of Women Self Help groups (Mandal Samakhyas). This process of up scaling includes giving an institutional frame work to the support systems for community participation and dissemination of knowledge which enables to make informed decisions about the technologies and practices and gain control over the resources. The experiences of involving women SHGs, Mandal Samakhyas has been proven successful. During 2008-09, the project covered about 13.81 lakh acres with 3.18 lakh farmers across 3171 villages in 18 districts of Andhra Pradesh.

Program Strategy:  CMSA is a paradigm shift in moving from input centric model to knowledge and skill based model.  It involves making best use of locally available natural resources and takes best advantage of the natural processes. The objective of CMSA is to bring sustainability to agricultural based livelihoods, with special focus on small and marginal farmers, tenants, agriculture labour and women. Further it aims at making small farming viable.  CMSA adopted Non pesticide management (NPM) approach for plant protection. NPM is the first step in CMSA. The ultimate step is natural and ecological farming, without any external chemical inputs. The main principle underlying NPM is that pests can be managed by understanding their behavior and lifecycle. The emphasis is on prevention rather than control.

 

A comprehensive strategy is evolved for pest management. These include: deep summer ploughing, community bonfires, seed treatment, bird perches, border crops, trap crops, yellow and white plates, intercrops, light traps, pheromone traps, delta traps in Ground nut, Alleys in Paddy, Cutting of the tips in Paddy at the time of transplantation. The above practices are called as ‘non-negotiable’ and are mandatory for all NPM farmers. The application of botanical extracts is only as a last resort.

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