GUWAHATI, July 29 - With a view to make available quality seeds to the farmers, the Assam State Seed Certification Agency (ASSCA) has taken up a Seed Village Programme across 19 districts, and the agency is also looking to increase by more than double and reach a figure of Rs one crore during this financial year.
Officials said that efforts have been directed to boost seed production, certification as well as procurement through joint efforts by the ASSCA and the Assam Seed Corporation (ASC).
“For 2017-18, we have taken up winter paddy seed production through Seed Village Programme in 19 districts. A total of 2,420 hectares of agricultural land and 7,260 farmers have been brought under the programme,” Ananda Karmakar, Managing Director of ASSCA, told The Assam Tribune.
He said that a total of 952 quintals of Swarna sub-1, Naveen and Ranjit foundation seeds from the Government’s share have been supplied as per the crop calendar.
“The distribution was for Sali or winter paddy. Such an effort is very necessary if we are to overcome the problem of having quality seeds in our State,” Karmakar said.
He said that ASSCA has been expanding its activities during recent years and the agency’s revenue has grown from Rs 25.84 lakh in 2015-16 to Rs 44.38 lakh in 2016-17.
“This year, with our own Village Seed Programme which has brought more land and farmers under the certification scheme, we are looking to more than double our revenue and reach a figure of at least Rs one crore,” Karmakar said.
The agency is helping farmers procure seeds produced by registered seed growers and certified by it. “Good quality seeds with boost income of farmers. Besides, the seeds produced in our State are being used within Assam,” he said.
ASSCA organised largescale training-cum-distribution for farmers during the May-June period this year.
In the last agricultural year, the agency certified 15 varieties of seeds.
Official sources said that in 2016-17, a total of 440 quintals of foundation seeds of mustard were distributed among the farmers for covering 4,402 hectares of land. Among the seed varieties included under the programme last year were TS-36, TS-38 and JD-6 respectively.