WAPRO Project Helps Farmers In Haryana, UP, Uttarakhand, Gujarat And MP Increase Income, Improve Crop Yield
Dehradun, Nov 19 (TNA) After helping farmers from Uttarakhand, Uttar Pradesh Haryana and few other states increase their income by over 30 per cent and also reducing their dependence on chemical fertilizers, Helvetas, Swiss Development and Cooperation, COOP and other partners are now looking at scaling the project on a much wider scale.
The five-year-long project, which benefited over 20,000 farmers, focused on water conservation techniques as well as bringing water users together to agree on a joint action and water use plan. The project is a coalition of partners LT foods, JAIN Irrigation, Biore, and Coastal Salinity Prevention Cell that worked on water stewardship.
The project, funded by Swiss Development and Cooperation and COOP, aimed to increase crop productivity, improve production of livestock, cost efficiency, and improved price realisation besides other areas. The project achieved better yield by consuming 30 percent less water and following organic farming practices.
“I congratulate Partners in Prosperity for working for the ground needs and for finding workable solutions for critical challenges related to the water. I encourage Partners in Prosperity to continue the excellent work they are doing and scale it up at a larger level,” Ganesh Joshi, Minister for Agriculture & Horticulture in Uttarakhand Government, told reporters on the sidelines of a national workshop organized on the subject, where he was the chief guest.
Naresh Chaudhary, CEO Partners in Prosperity (PnP) said that the project was undertaken in Haryana, Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Madhya Pradesh and Gujarat and in all the locations it had immensely helped the farmers. The project aimed to use sustainable practices to improve water productivity in the rice-based system in these states.
The learnings would now be implemented at a much larger scale so as to extend the benefit to a large farming community. We all are immensely satisfied that the Water Productivity Project (WAPRO) funded by Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) and spearheaded by Helvetas Swiss Intercoorperation has contributed meaningfully, he added.
Dr. Dipankar Saha, National Water Policy Advisor – WAPRO project, mentioned that India has achieved food security which is an excellent achievement. But in the process, we are becoming water insecure. We must bring in sustainable use of water for Agriculture which is the major consumer of water.
The core objective of the project is to enhance farming income and increase water productivity embedded in participatory local water governance schemes and their corresponding regulatory and market frameworks. The partners worked towards creating awareness about the importance of water saving, and improve linkages with the premium market and the results are there for everyone to see, he said.
Due to the traditional practice of agriculture, the groundwater is depleting at a very alarming rate, and it indicates the importance of sustainable practices to avoid the deterioration of natural resources. The project achieved a 33% reduction in water used in Paddy cultivation by adopting a combination of appropriate and efficient technologies like Alternate Wetting and Drying, Direct Sown Rice and Drip irrigation.
Through the national event on water and food security, Partners in Prosperity has facilitated a dialogue with elected representatives, policymakers, stakeholders, and civil societies on water and food security issues in the diverse agro-climatic conditions in India and identified the way forward for addressing the arising concerns.