November 2010

A livestock Farmville

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Project Nandini has turned cattle breeding into an integrated process that’s benefiting farmers in over 880 Orissa villages

Project Name
ICT for Livestock Productivity (Nandini)

The organisation
Department of IT, Government of Orissa

Key People

  • P K Mohapatra, Revenue Divisional CommissionerRamani Ranjan Mohanty, a farmer from Mandasahi village in Jagatsinghpur district, used to face much problem in ascertaining the right time for check-up of his cows or to know the peak yield time or causes of repeat breeding. He had little knowledge about trimming down the calving interval and stopping milking for betterment of the next procreation.Thanks to Project Nandini, now Ramani is one of the successful dairy farmers in the district and is investing more in his dairy farm owing to his confidence and level of encouragement through Project Nandini.

    No wonder, then the man on the feild is upbeat about about the growing productivity, and better returns.

    “Performance recording and proper maintenance of farmer’s handbook and provision of SMS alert for attention on the animal due for artificial insemination, pregnancy diagnosis, expected date of delivery, de-worming, vaccination, peak yield point and dry-off have all resulted in prolific dairy farming,” Mohanty says.

    Prior to the implementation of the project, veterinary services had a fire-brigade approach. The productivity of dairy animals was poor due to non availability of animals with good breeding value and lack of proper management practice, which rendered dairy farming a non-remunerative enterprise. There was no or inadequate animal recording system. At the same time, there was lack of awareness at farmers’ level on how to enhance the productivity of their livestock. Also, there was inadequate public infrastructure and logistics to reach the farmers in time of need.

    Village and block-level meetings have beenconducted, involving livestock farmers, Panchayati Raj institutions, general public and service providers. Similarly, workshops and seminars have been conducted with participation from professionals like directors and officials from Animal Husbandry and Veterinary Science departments of Orissa and domain experts from Orissa University of Agriculture and Technology. Further, the help desk services and SMS services have effectively sensitised the communities in the project area.

    Ashok K Meena, Commissioner-cum-Secretary, Food Supplies and Consumer Welfare Department, Orissa and Former state IT Secretary remarks, “The initiative can confidently help by identifying wide-scale cost reduction opportunities and managing cost reduction inputs such as manpower and mobility cost of the beneficiaries. It has been designed to implement sustainable improvements in cost structures, to streamline infrastructures and adjust service delivery models and redesign business models that can help farmers.”

    Sums up Pradeep Kumar Mohapatra, Revenue Divisional Commissioner—Central Division— Cuttack, Orissa and Former IT Secretary, “Technological change in the livestock subsector can generate more income and employment opportunities for the resource-poor households and contribute towards alleviation of poverty and improvements in income distribution. Intervention of ICT in productivity is a landmark aspect of the project.”

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