Zero budget natural farming comes as a boon for East Godavari residents

RAJAMAHENDRAVARAM : The district administration of East Godavari is encouraging many farmers to practice zero budget natural farming (ZBNF). And around 12,258 farmers from 36 mandals of East Godavari are following this ZBNF and have succeeded in their endeavour. They are cultivating paddy, papaya, vegetables and others under organic farming. According to District Project Manager K Parthasarathy of ZBNF, it was started during 2015-16 in East Godavari. This year, we kept a target to reach out to around 12,258 farmers in 34 mandals across East Godavari. He further said that this ZBNF method enables the farmers to cultivate without using pesticides and chemicals, which may damage the crops. 

The farmers are using cow urine, cow dung, and neem leaves to enhance the fertility of farm fields. The yield of agriculture production per acre in this pattern of ZBNF is 24 bags whereas it will be 30 bags in the other fields where they use pesticides and chemicals. Though the production may be less, the quality and healthy food is important. Usage of pesticides in the farm field will damage the soil fertility. 

He further added that the Andhra Pradesh government will extend a subsidy of Rs. 6,000 for constructing a shed to accommodate two cows and Rs 12,000 towards more than two cows to encourage the farmers to go for this ZBNF type of cultivation and farming. A small and narrow channel from cow shed has to be connected to farm field. In addition, the government is providing a subsidy of Rs 50,000 to each farmer for those who wants to start a venture for making natural fertilizers. 

For instance, the authorities have furnished the details of a farmer belongs to Artamur village of Mandapeta Mandal and his name is Chinta Divya Sundara Rami Reddy. In one acre of farm land, he is cultivating paddy and on the banks of the field papaya, and vegetables. He dug a kandakam type of tank around his farm field and has taken up fish breeding.

He is producing 24 bags of paddy without using any chemicals and pesticides. He said the expenditure has come down drastically by 50%. Assistant Director of Agriculture Department Kasi Viswanatha Chodary, President of District Library N Veereddy, Dy Director of Information and Public Relations Department M Francis and officers of Agriculture Department TK Doctor Babu, N Sandhya participated.

Money matters
L6,000 for constructing a shed to accommodate two cows 
L12,000 towards shed for more than two cows
L50,000 for farmer who wants to start a venture for making natural fertilizers

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