5th June 2014, New Delhi
“The future of agriculture is in the hands of small farmers who constitute the majority of vast farming community. We have already demonstrated our technological strength in practising profitable agriculture, attuned to social and environmental milieu”, said Dr. S. Ayyappan, President, National Academy of Agricultural Sciences (NAAS) and Secretary, DARE & DG, ICAR. He was delivering the Presidential Address of Annual General Body Meeting of NAAS on the theme ‘Family Farms: Farm, Feed & Flourish’.
He said the year 2014 is Year of Family Farming’ (IYFF) based on the significant contributions made by family farmers. He emphasised although family farming has contributed immensely towards enhancing agricultural production and reducing rural poverty, it is experiencing new challenges due to globalization and trade liberalization.
Dr. Ayyappan said Indian economy has now reached a stage where labour has started moving out of agriculture in a big way and workforce in agriculture has stated falling in absolute terms. Though this is considered positive change from economic transformation point of view, it has implications for agriculture. The family farming demands that besides economics, continuous up gradation of knowledge levels, entrepreneurship and benefits to environment should be duly considered. The need is to make agriculture more exciting and rewarding for family farms so that self-employed workers in agriculture are not pushed to move out to non agriculture under distress. The approach hence of Family Farms is ‘Farm, Feed & Floursih’
President, NAAS inducted newly elected fellows of the academy. On the occasion, Dr. Ayyappan also informed that the NAAS is organizing the 12th Agricultural Science Congress at National Dairy Research Institute (NDRI), Karnal during February 3-6, 2015. The theme of the 2015 Agriculture Science Congress has been specifically chosen as “Sustainable Livelihood Security for Small Holder Farmers”.
(Source: NAIP Mass Media Project, DKMA)