A team of FOCUS-Nagaland project officials held a meeting with the officials of Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) of the United Nations in India in New Delhi on Friday to further promote the project in Nagaland.
The Fostering Climate Resilient Upland Farming Systems (FOCUS) Nagaland team was led by Nagaland agriculture production commissioner and mission director Y Kikheto Sema while FAO team was led by its country representative Tomio Shichiri.
The Nagaland government launched the FOCUS project in 2017 to help small and marginal farmers overcome the challenges in agriculture.
The project, funded by the International Fund for Agriculture Development (IFAD), is covering 647 villages in eight districts of the state for an initial period of six years up to 2023.
At the meeting, Sema laid emphasis on the importance of learning new and innovative farming technologies for agricultural growth in Nagaland.
He appealed to the FAO to organise exposure visits for both the officers and farmers to different parts of the state, regions of the country and if possible to other countries having similar agro-climatic conditions and farming practices, an official release said.
Sema thanked the FAO officials for supporting the FOCUS-Nagaland project.
The FAO is a partner organisation in the FOCUS project and is providing various training and handholding support to key interventions planned under the project.
The major activities of the project include preparation of training materials and conducting training of veterinary officers in animal production, preparation of training materials and conducting training of trainers in sloping agricultural land technology, agronomy, horticulture, animal husbandry.
The other activities include preparation of a long-term weather data-based agro-climatic atlas for Nagaland, development of a computerised management information system (MIS) and the support and training of MIS staff in its operation.
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Support for project monitoring and evaluation including baseline survey and endline survey with impact assessment and engagement of specialist consultants in highland farming systems, agroforestry, soil and water conservation and animal production are other activities of the project.
Earlier in the day, Sema along with joint secretary and state project director of FOCUS-Nagaland S Tainiu met the joint secretary of the department of economic affairs, Manisha Sinha, to brief her about the FOCUS-Nagaland project and also to discuss the issue of advance grant from the IFAD. Sinha assured to look into the matter.
They also urged her to include three more districts of Noklak, Peren and Tuensang of the state in the FOCUS project.