Seed is the starting point of agriculture and dictates ultimate productivity of other inputs. Good quality seed alone increases the yield by 15-20 per cent. To meet the potential challenge of catering to the food need of 1.4 billion people of our country by 2025, a quantum increase in agricultural productivity is very much essential and hence production and distribution of high quality seeds of improved varieties/ hybrids to the fanning community is becoming increasingly important. The expansion of agriculture under tropical conditions due to the improvement of cultivars with juvenile period imposed a scientific and technological challenges concerning the seed production under different environmental conditions.
The seed programme includes the participation of state government, SAU system, public sector, cooperative and private sector institutions. With the best efforts of all these organized sectors, only 15-20 per cent of the total requirement of quality seed is being met with. In most, kind of seeds, the farmers depend on their own farm saved seeds for crop production which needs certain basic practices of selection of good seeds for sowing. Moreover the crops are raised for market and a small portion of the grains are separated, stored and used as seeds in the next season which may not meet the quality aspects as expected for a seed which results in poor field stand, and ultimately yield.
The distribution of high volume low value seeds such as rice varieties, oil seeds and pulses are still with the public sector organization. The non-availability of quality seeds in oilseeds and pulses is one of the main reasons for its lower seed replacement rate. The immediate increase in the productivity and production of these corps can be achieved by a higher distribution of quality seeds of new and high yielding varieties.
What is seed village?
Establishment of seed villages
The present programme of seed village scheme is having two phases
I. Seed production of different crops
Seed village concept is to promote the quality seed production of foundation and certified seed classes. The area which is suitable for raising a particular crop will be selected, and raised with single variety of a kind.
Selection of area
The area with the following facilities will be selected.
Suitable area for seed production will be identified by the Scientists. The foundation/ certified seeds or University labeled seeds will be supplied by the University through Krishi Vigyan Kendras (KVKs) and Research Stations at 50% subsidy cost to the identified farmers in the area. The farmers will use these quality seeds and take up their own seed production in a small area (1 acre) for their own use. The crops are Rice, Pulses and Oilseeds.
Duration of the training : 3 days
A seed grower forum will be organized for further empowerment of technology and marketing. .
Seed village programme in Tamil Nadu
Crops: Paddy, Pulses, Oilseeds and Millets
II. Establishing seed processing unit
Post-harvest seed handling is a vital component of the total technology in marketing available good quality seeds of improved varieties. If the seeds arenot processed and handled properly, all the past efforts in production may be lost. Thus seed processing and packaging is very important aspect in seed production..! The location of seed processing centers is based on the available infrastructure and convenience. Such a place will be well connected with roads and transportation facilities. Each seed processing center will have the following infrastructure. .
The information center will have internet facility to provide access to information on seed demand and market trends, agriculture market index, weather forecast, plant protection measures etc.,
Advantages of Seed Village Concept or Compact Area Approach
1. Solve the problem of isolation. Mainly in cross pollinated crops like maize, sunflower where it required more Isolation distance the problem will be solved by raising a single variety in a large area.
Source: Training manual on Capacity building of extension functionaries under part – II plan 12.05.2008 to 16.05.2008
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