With a focus on increasing the area under banana and its productivity, Tamil Nadu Agricultural University is orienting various stakeholders on precision farming techniques.
National Committee on Plasticulture Applications in Horticulture (NCPAH), Ministry of Agriculture, has the mandate to promote and develop the use of plastics in agriculture, horticulture, water management and other allied areas. On the recommendation of the NCPAH, the Government has also established 22 Precision Farming Development Centres (PFDCs) throughout the country, to promote research and extension activities in promotion of these applications.
A PFDC was established at TNAU by the Government of India as early as 1985-86. This has been carrying out various research activities for the State on precision farming in protected cultivation, plastic mulching, plastic lining, micro-irrigation system, fertigation, etc. It has also been conducting training programmes, agricultural events, live demonstrations, workshops and television programmes to promote these technologies.
It recently organised a workshop on ‘Precision Farming Technologies for Banana”, in association with the Precision Farming Development Centre, and Department of Soil and Water Conservation Engineering.
Scientists from various research organisations, farmers, post-graduate and doctoral research students, faculty from soil and water and environmental engineering, and engineers from micro-irrigation manufacturing firms, attended the workshop that dealt on themes such as hi-tech horticulture technology for banana production, water management technology, plant protection technology, harvest and post-harvest technology and marketing of banana. Farmers’ and industries’ success stories of precision farming technologies in banana were shared.
The Government has established 22 Precision Farming Development Centres