Why Do We Need IARD
With one-seventh of the world’s population, India’s economic stability is dependent on the sustained growth of agriculture and allied activities. Agriculture in all its sectors is the primary source of livelihood in India. However, despite productivity improvements, the yield of the Indian agricultural sector remains low by international standards, and only marginally higher than the world average.
The Government of India has set an ambitious target of doubling farmers’ income by 2022. In order to achieve this goal, it promotes holistic development of on- and off-farm agriculture activity to provide better returns to farmers. The crucial challenge for India’s agricultural development is to ensure that small and marginal farmers are able to gain adequate remuneration from farming and contribute to the country’s increasing demand for food. Less-efficient traditional farming practices in India limit farmers from realizing the full potential of their landholding. In addition to the traditional challenges, the changing climate is a major concern in agriculture that impacts small farmers.
Deviations in rainfall, changing temperatures, efficiency, and availability of inputs all have an impact on the crop yield, quality of the produce, and overall output. At the same time, outreach of government agriculture extension services and programs in these remote areas are lacking. All these factors add to the risks in small-scale agriculture, thereby making it non-remunerative.