27th May, 2015, Panipat
Interface meeting of Basmati progressive farmers was organized by Krishi Vigyan Kendra (KVK), Panipat on Good Agricultural Practices (GAP) for raising export quality basmati rice here today.
The meeting was chaired by renowned rice breeder and Padamshree Dr. Vijay Pal Singh and Dr. Rajbir Singh, Zonal Project Director, Zone-1.
Dr. Vijay Pal Singh, in his inaugural address, said that the onus is on the farmers to adopt good agricultural practices to produce quality rice as per international standards. The contamination in the form of pesticides residues and heavy metals are the serious issues which may cripple the basmati export and the solution of both these problems lies with the farmers.
Dr. Rajbir Singh said that the Zone-1 has the Geographical Indicators where basmati is cultivated. Adoption of Good Agricultural Practices can result in reduced production cost and higher prices in the market. He emphasized that efforts should be made to involve all the stakeholders in this campaign.
Dr. A.S. Dahiya, Sr. Coordinator, KVK, Panipat made the farmers aware about the fact that pesticide residue will run counter to the interest of the farmers and farmers should take measures to reduce the pesticides load.
Dr. Rajbir Garg, agronomist at KVK, Panipat advised the farmers to delay the transplanting of PB-1509 variety beyond 15, July, 2015 for quality consideration. Early transplanted PB-1509 will be of poor quality and such practice may seal the fate of this otherwise excellent variety.
Dr. Anupam Dixit and Dr. Ritesh Sharma, experts from BEDF, informed farmers about the recently released varieties of basmati rice and importance of quality seed in production chain.
Dr. S. K. Sharma highlighted the benefits of the use of rice husk ash as soil amendment. He said that the use of ash imparts hardness in the plants by augmenting the supply of silica.
This programme was jointly organized by KVK, Panipat and Basmati Export Development Foundation (BEDF), Modipuram.
More than 150 progressive farmers deliberated on the issue with experts.
(Source: Zonal Project Directorate, Zone-1, Ludhiana)