Crusader of organic farming
Times are changing and things do not seem to be happening for good. With the changing times, climatic conditions are also changing thanks to the callousness of the modern generation.
Times are changing and things do not seem to be happening for good. With the changing times, climatic conditions are also changing thanks to the callousness of the modern generation. In the mad rush for modernisation and urbanisation, people are utterly disregarding the Mother Earth and digging their own graves. Agricultural sector also is facing hard times due to many reasons and the need to promote organic farming is becoming all the more important.
Perhaps, this was what prompted Suresh Reddy, a landlord and farmer from Warangal district, to take to organic farming and of course advocate the new method among other farmers. He successfully cultivated red rice through organic farming and is busy explaining people about the advantages of red rice.
According to him, there are several benefits regarding red rice produced through organic farming. Suresh Reddy said in the present days there were many new methods which were followed in agriculture and an equal amount of unseen problems hidden in it. He said organic farming was one of the best solutions for the present day situation.
“Paddy is the main crop in Andhra Pradesh, and majority of the people are consuming white rice. Apart from white raw rice, not many people know about brown rice which is nutritious and maintain much better health. The farmers in AP grow paddy in both Rabi and Kharif seasons, which are turning out to be a tough time in the present scenario due to severe water scarcity. Only a very few must have heard about red organic rice, which is having more health benefits, compared to brown rice,” he said.
While detailing about the method of cultivation after ploughing and administering seeding mixture of (cow dung, cow urine, jaggery, fried grams flour and black mud), he said the ingredients should be mixed thoroughly which was called ‘Jeevamrutha’. The mixture should be sprinkled once in a week after mixing, for the strength of the crop, he said.
In case of attacks by insects or outbreak of diseases, the farmers can prepare homemade pesticides with cow milk, fermented butter milk, black pepper, neem seeds or leaves, tobacco powder, garlic paste, green chilli paste and sprinkle it to prevent pests from attacking the crop. Organic red rice is a 100-day crop. The paddy was mixed with 2 kg salt per 100 kg to protect from worms and insects, he said.
There are many health benefits with organic red rice, which is rich in fibre, controls blood sugar, contains complex carbohydrates which is good for health, good source of iron, manganese, antioxidants, enzyme, zinc, vitamin B6 and decreases bad cholesterol.
District Organic Farming Coordinator K Sambasiva Rao said soil test and groundwater test was very important before starting any organic farming for better outcome. After knowing about organic farming and the success story of Suresh Reddy, a farmer from Vuyyuru, M J Rao, has decided to cultivate organic red rice coming season, and is hopeful that the government would encourage the farmers in organic farming by introducing agricultural subsidy schemes.
By C Pradeep