A special training programme on “Advances in Horticultural Production Technologies” for the farmers of Chenniamalai and Amma Pettai blocks of Erode District of Tamil Nadu was organised at ICAR-IIHR, Bangalore from April 5-7 th,2022. The purpose of the training progarmme was to create awareness among the farmers about ICAR-IIHR technologies. This progarmme was started with ICAR song followed by IIHR jingle. Dr. R. Venkattakumar, Principal Scientist and In-charge Head, Division of Social Science and Training, ICAR-IIHR, Bengaluru welcomed the gathering and explained about ICAR-IIHR technologies for doubling the farmers income. The presidential address was given by Dr. B.N.S. Murthy, Director, IIHR, Bengaluru who motivated the farmers for effective utilization and dissemination of IIHR technologies through various schemes of Department of Horticulture and he laid emphasis on developing entrepreneurs through various ICAR-IIHR technologies including seed production and quality planting materials multiplication. Dr. V. Sankar, Principal Scientist, Division of Social Sciences and Training ICAR-IIHR, delivered lecture on "Varieties and hybrids of IIHR developed vegetable crops and latest production technologies of ICAR-IIHR” suitable for Erode District of Tamil Nadu followed by ICAR-IIHR fruit crop technologies and other commercial horticultural technologies explained by Dr. R. Senthil Kumar, Principal Scientist. Dr.M.Senthil Kumar delivered lecture on organic and protected cultivation of vegetables. Dr.R.Uma Maheswari, Senior Scientist explained about use of bio nematicide application in various horticultural crops. Scientists from Crop protection Division, Dr G.M.Sandeep Kumar and Dr.R.Uma Maheswari interacted with farmers and cleared doubts related to pest and disease management of various Horticultural crops.
ICAR-IIHR scientists emphasized the farmers of Tamil Nadu to take up demonstration of ICAR-IIHR released varieties and hybrids of fruits, vegetables and flowers and also urged to make use of IIHR seed portal for purchase of seeds and planting materials required for respective region. There was an interaction meeting with farmers and scientists at the end of each lecture where in doubts raised by the farmers were cleared. Field visit to demonstration block, polyhouses, ATIC, Vegetable seed unit, Ekalavya Private nursery. mushroom lab, nursery units and farmers field visits were made. During the field visit Dr.S.Bhuvaneswari, Principal Scientist explained about post harvest management practices of various horticultural crops and BESST HORT activities. Dr.A,Carolin Rathina Kumari explained about IIHR developed various farmers friendly horticultural machineries including mobile vending van. This programme was attended by 100 farmers and 5 officials from Department of Horticulture and Plantation crops, Government of Tamil Nadu, Erode. The whole programme was organized and coordinated by Dr.V.Sankar, Dr.R.Venkattakumar and Dr. R. Senthil Kumar, Division of Social Sciences and Training, ICAR-IIHR, Bangalore.
At the end of the training progarmme, under SCSP programme, around 10 SC farmers from Chennimalai and Ammapettai blocks of Erode district were identified and distributed with ICAR-IIHR developed products comprising micronutrients, biofertilizer and biopesticide products that is required for application in 1 acre of crop. Dr. V. Sankar distributed micronutrinet products viz, Arka Banana Special and Arka Vegetable special; Dr. R. Senthilumar distributed Arka Microbial Consortium and Dr. R. Umamaheswai distributed biopesticide products viz., Trichoderma harzianum, Pseudmonas fluorescens, Paecilomyces lilacinus and Arka All Rounder products to all the identified SC farmers of Erode District of Tamil Nadu.