Koraput Farmers’ Association (KFA) was established in the year 2000-2001 in order to bring a qualitative chan
KFA has been more focused in not only in paddy based or millet based agricultural activities but also it believes in diversification in agriculture. It focuses only community orientated and community scented agro based activities. In this process of activities, it has introduced the programme like “Varietal Improvement of Potato varieties to biotic resistance and enriching germaplsm & Sustainable Intensification of Potato for Achieving Self-Sufficiency in Odisha” with the partnership of “The International Potato Center (CIP)”. This programme is for demonstration and scaling up of Potato cultivation in Koraput region
Despite the challenges, in the Koraput region has immense potential to increase potato production by expanding acreage and improving productivity. In this context, KFA has been working towards potentiality of enhancement of potato production expansion. The soils and environment in many parts of Koraput District are suitable for cultivating potato. It is also an opportune time to diversify and intensify the rice-based system in a sustainable way, raise farmers’ incomes through the production of this profitable crop, and diversify the agro-food system. With a holistic approach this year KFA, introduced the potato cultivation system in the various parts of Koraput District with the best available technological methodology among the farmers.
KFA members have been working in a participatory and innovative bottom up informal model where the farmers organize themselves into groups and synchronize their operations by virtually converting their small landholdings into a large field. This allows small farmers to benefit from economies of scale and bargaining power of large farm. Towards diversity of agriculture, KFA not only working with the farmers at their respective field but it has been working towards capacitating small and marginal farmers to achieve bargaining power by strengthening backward and forward integration along the supply chain, reducing the per unit cost of production, improve yields, improve efficiency by synchronizing selected key operations – thus aiming to improve agricultural capabilities of the small and marginal farmers.
Time to time KFA develops sites as demo plots to showcase combined benefits of improved potato varieties and production practices, better pest and disease management, crop integration (potato complementing rice), and water and nutrient management. To make the farmers of Koraput District more adoptive towards potato cultivation process and generate interest among them, KFA imported the high yielding variety of potato called “Khufri Jyoti” from the Punjab and distributed among the interested farmers in a subsidiary rate.