Volume 1, Number 1-2, October - December 2013


About the Cover

In the old days the pre-industrial regimen persisted to some extent. Farms were principal sources of wealth and employment. The first ploughs were wooden, later with iron edges, and then completely of iron, but by 1880 they would have been of steel like the single furrow one on the right. During the early years of the 20th century the average holding was around 15 acres (6 hectares) with 30% of the tenancy applications coming from agricultural labourers. Humans faced many uncertainties and difficulties when they first started living in communities long ago. They often prayed to God to help them in getting food and shelter and for safety and security. Until about four decades ago, crop yields in agricultural systems depended on internal resources, recycling of organic matter, built-in biological control mechanisms and rainfall patterns. Agricultural yields were modest, but stable. Production was safeguarded by growing more than one crop or variety in space and time in a field as insurance against pest outbreaks or severe weather. Inputs of nitrogen were gained by rotating major field crops with legumes. In turn rotations suppressed insects, weeds and diseases by effectively breaking the life cycles of these pests. When agricultural modernization progressed, the ecology-farming linkage was often broken as ecological principles were ignored and/or overridden. Today monocultures have increased dramatically worldwide, mainly through the geographical expansion of land devoted to single crops and year-to-year production of the same crop species on the same land. There are political and economic forces influencing the trend to devote large areas to monoculture, and in fact such systems are rewarded by economies of scale and contribute significantly to the ability of national agricultures to serve international markets. Modern agriculture must seek to feed the world's growing population with little or no cost to the Environment.


East Asia’s view of environmental ethics

Gede Suwantana I

The direction of Deep Ecology’s ‘Look to the East’ and its ‘primacy of the ontological over the ethical’ has initiated a new phase in contemporary environmentalism. It has, at the same time, initiated to look into the non-Western cultures, philosophies and religions to overcome this global crisis via eco-spiritualism. Cotemporary environmentalists, including the eco-philosophers, now turn to the East─ into its philosophy, religions, and cultures—to overcome the legacy of dualism of man and nature. They apprehend that environmentalism can hardly succeed until the eastern world-view, insights and life-styles are encouraged. In their search for eastern traditions they enter into the depth of religious cultures of Buddhism, Zen Buddhism, Confucianism, Taoism, Shintoism, and others.

Discovery Agriculture, 2013, 1(1), 6-11

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Gender mainstreaming paradigm in the context of Indian marine fisheries sector: elucidation of success cases

Vipinkumar VP, Meenakumari B, Jayasankar P, Shanthi B

The article explores the selected case studies pertaining to the paradigm of gender mainstreaming in Indian marine fisheries sector focusing attention on the gender equity and equality. Gender empowerment paradigm has been explored with emphasis on three pillars such as economic empowerment, well- being and decision making. The mariculture potential of India is vast as there is great scope for developing farming of shrimps, pearl oysters, mussels, crabs, lobsters, sea bass, groupers, mullets, milkfish, rabbit fish, sea cucumber, ornamental fishes, seaweeds etc. Although about 1.2 million ha is suitable for land based saline aquaculture in India, currently only 13 % is utilized. The mariculture technologies conspicuously being disseminated by Central Marine Fisheries Research Institute (CMFRI) with involvement of women and those possessing potential for women’s participation include mussel farming, edible oyster farming, pearl oyster farming and pearl production, clam culture, lobster farming and fattening, crab farming / fattening, sea cucumber culture, marine finfish culture, ornamental fish culture, seaweed culture, open sea cage farming etc. The paper highlights six case studies on gender empowerment of weaker sections in marine fisheries sector based on the practical experience of the scientists in the marine fisheries sector which comprised case studies on women’s Self Help Groups in Malabar Fisheries Sector, bivalve farming Self Help Groups of women in Kollam and Kasargod of Kerala, mussel farming Self Help Groups in Karwar of Karnataka, Institution-Village-Linkage Programme (IVLP) for Technology Assessment and Refinement, dry fish processing of women’s Self Help Group and a fisher family’s success story on crab fattening. The paper also highlights the gender issues and challenges in mariculture and marine fisheries sector in India. To ensure rapid economic development, removal of gender imbalances should be established as a priority. This would mobilize the remaining fifty percent of the country’s human resources and would result in the smooth movement of the economic wheel. Integrating gender perspective in mariculture research and technology development is inevitable because the gender mainstreaming approach advances gender equality and equity in the society. As equity is a means and equality is a result, there is a genuine need for integrating gender perspective in development works or in mariculture extension also because women are the important stakeholders of our development process and our Extension system hardly targets the women folk for technological empowerment. These case studies can be used as case models and practical manual for promoting action and group empowerment in mobilizing SHGs in any key areas on a sustainable basis.

Discovery Agriculture, 2013, 1(1), 12-25

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Behind rice planting ceremony at traditional rice field in Hindu community in Bali

Gusti Ngurah Sudiana I

Balinese Hindus farmers plant rice in the paddy fields is always bound by six things, namely subak, sekaa, ceremony, padewasan (good and bad days / abstinence), The Gods, and Ulun Suwi Temple. This attachment is very visible in each phase of growing rice in fields such as start cultivating the soil, plant, maintain, harvest, store grain and utilize the results. The ceremony is the most dominant of the attachment to encourages work ethics of the farmers in Bali Hindu. Upacara to diligently cultivate paddy for planting is a form of Hindu community in Bali belief, because the rice is believed to symbolize Dewi Sri / fertility goddess that install in Ulun Suwi Temple, that is generally located in the middle of the field on each subak area. However Dewi Sri also believed install in Banua in the complex Besakih temple, a temple that has a very significant ritual status associated with rice. This temple is a place of worship Dewi Sri and agriculture is the main temple in Besakih though agricultural ritual performed in other pretend. Temple which often have similar names to the Banua, or similar functions, are found in many other areas in Bali. In the Banua temple there are two big ceremony, Usaba Bubuh and Usaba Ngeed, ceremonies held at the temple and is traditionally performed during harvest. Ritual importance is shown by the use of buffalo on usaba bubuh, and the procession to the other big pretended during usaba ngeed which celebrates the marriage of Dewi Sri and Rambut Sedana. Goddess Uma/Dewi Sri as a symbol of fertility, while Rambut Sedana as a symbol of prosperity. Dewi Sri is associated with rice plants while Rambut Sedana is associated with money. Ceremonies for planting rice in paddy imbued by the spirit of fertility and prosperity so as to build a work ethic of farmers in cultivating the soil, planting, nurturing, harvesting, storing agricultural produce (rice) which is used for three things for offerings, daily necessities and economics.

Discovery Agriculture, 2013, 1(1), 26-32

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Potential for ammonia and nitrite reducing products for shrimp farms in Andhra Pradesh

Shyam S Salim, Nakul A Sadafule

The ammonia and nitrate problems are considered to be detrimental to the sustainability of aquaculture industry in Andhra Pradesh. Thus it is important to know about the awareness and technical knowledge about the possible symptoms, mitigating measures and quantification of losses. In addition, the farmers are very much price responsive. The ammonia and nitrite reducing products is a growing market on account of the capital intensive nature of shrimp farming. There exist many products in the market. It is also important to know about the different competing product, prices, technical support provided. The market potential for the different ammonia and nitrite reducing products was done in the state of Andhra Pradesh. The data was collected from districts; East Godavari, West Godavari and Nellore, and 180 respondents were surveyed. The study indicated that the awareness of ammonia is very high among the group of farmers. They are also of opinion in its detrimental effect on the yield losses. Currently there exist as many 21 products in the market. The market continues to remain as monopolistic competition with more and more entrants in the market. There exist numerous products, sale services technical guidance, product promotion programs, incentives and credit availability to insure the brand loyalty of customer. Nevertheless there exists a scope for new product entry into the market. With more than 45 percent of the customers showing their desire for the replacement of the product and 73 percent of aspiring for the product with different futures and other services like consultancy farm delivery. Ammonia and nitrate problem in shrimp farming will continue to occur and based on the effects, perception, awareness visible symptoms as expressed by the different farmers should be taken into account. The marketing strategy of the new product entry will be based on product development; promotion taking into account of more scientific validity. The product should be price responsive. Lastly the marketing strategy of the new product should be based on immediate and effective results.

Discovery Agriculture, 2013, 1(1), 33-38

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Impact of organic amendments and inorganic fertilizers on post harvest storage life and organoleptic quality of tomato under eastern Himalayan region

Ranjit Chatterjee, Paul PK

A study was conducted to assess the impact of different nutrient combination of field tomato on post harvest storage life and organoleptic quality of fresh fruits. Fourteen different treatment combinations comprising two organic manures (Farmyard manure and vermicompost), inorganic fertilizers and biofertilizer in different levels were laid out in RBD with three replications during 2005-06 and 2006-07 at UBKV, Pundibari, Coochcbehar,West Bengal, India. The findings indicated that the nutrient schedule of the crop significantly influenced the physiological loss in weight (PLW) of tomato fruits as well as organoleptic quality and rotting level of fruits. The nutrient schedule comprising of higher amount of organic amendments and reduced amount of chemical fertilizers have shown promising performance over chemical fertilizers alone. The nutrient schedule comprising of 75% inorganic fertilizers along with higher dose of vermicompost (4 t ha-1) in conjugation with biofertilizer emerged as potential nutrient source for improving post harvest storage life of fresh fruits. The same treatment also enhanced the organoleptic quality and lessens the rotting percentage of fruits.

Discovery Agriculture, 2013, 1(1), 39-42

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A Compilation of Indigenous Technical Knowledge in Marine Fisheries Sector of Karnataka

Vipinkumar VP, Swathilekshmi PS, Salini KP, Ambrose TV, Sunil PV, Dhanya G

The research article makes an earnest effort to compile the major Indigenous Technical Knowledge (ITKs) prevailing in Karnataka. The major objectives were to document the different FTKIs of the coastal villages of Karnataka and to anlayse the changes in practice as well as to study the perception of the scientists and the fisherfolk on the role of FTKIs in resource management. ITKs categorised under eight groups such as ‘Craft and Gear Making/Maintenance’, ‘Shoal Identification’, ‘Harvesting Methods’, ‘Predicting Natural Hazards’, ‘Preservation Techniques’, ‘Processing’, ‘Medicinal Uses’ and ‘Beliefs & Value systems’ have been collected through personal interview of 400 stakeholders including fisherfolk, farmers, policy makers, development agencies, govt. departments and NGOs with a structured interview schedule, focus group interactions and PLA techniques undertaken in potential maritime pockets of Karnataka state such as Mangalore, Ullal, Thalapadi, Bhadkal, Baithkol, Tadri, Belekeri, Dandebag, Karwar, Sunkeri, etc. free flow of information on ITKs was encouraged and documented everything recorded as such. In the second phase each practice was examined systematically for the scientific rationale by the project associates and the changes in the practice of FTKIs were quantified through interactive sessions and appropriate PLA tools. The scientific rationale behind the selected items as perceived by the scientists and the fisherfolk was also found out at appropriate stages through content analysis. This identification and documentation process of the fisherfolk on ITKs will accelerate the technology transfer as well as the technology refinement in such a way to suit to the needs of the target group as it acknowledges their inherited knowledge and value system and thereby the inclusion of selected FTKIs in the contemporary management measures will augment the resource management strategies.

Discovery Agriculture, 2013, 1(1), 43-50

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Gender Mainstreaming and Women Empowerment – Reflections and Upshots from fishing industry of Kerala


Mainstreaming aims at incorporating gender concerns as an integral element in the implementation, monitoring and evaluation of policies and programmes so that benefits are shared equally and inequality isn’t perpetuated. (UNDP, 2008) opined that investing in women competencies and empowering them to exercise their choice is the surest way to sustain economic growth and development. In India, fisheries sector provides a livelihood for women as a source of supplementing fisher household income by their engagement in pre and post-harvest activities including marketing. The fisherwomen in Kerala assume significance due to their involvement in fish related activities leading to distribution, availability and value addition. The study focused the economic, social, political and legal empowerment of fisherwomen involved in processing and marketing across four occupational groupsviz. fish retailer, fish vendor, dry fish makers, and value added fish producers and was based on primary data collected from fisherwomen households. The study analyzed empowerment levels using scoring indices and composite empowerment index for fisherwomen categories were estimated. The social and economic empowerment level was high with freedom in decision making and household expenditure. Handling, transporting and storage operations exhibited highest level of discriminations. SHG’s and co-operatives were major networking institutions which augmented empowerment levels. Market intelligence and news were concerns of continuing discriminations. The results indicated that the fisherwomen in Kerala possessed healthier composite fisherwomen empowerment index. Nevertheless appropriate institutional arrangements ensuring equal opportunities in fish marketing and processing and priority for institutional credit access will mend gender discrimination of fisherwomen for future.

Discovery Agriculture, 2013, 1(1), 51-59

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Influence of fly ash on soil characteristics of Kharland pond, Ratnagiri (Maharashtra)

Tekade AS, Kulkarni GN, Mohite SA

Fly ash is a powdery waste of coal-power generation and its management is a major environmental challenge. However, fly ash is useful ameliorant that may improve the physical and chemical properties of problem soil and is a source of readily available micro and macro nutrients. In the present investigation fly ash was incorporated in various proportions to study the influence on the acidic laterite soil on selected physico-chemical parameters.

Discovery Agriculture, 2013, 1(2), 62-66

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Influence of Endosulfan and Quinalphos on Biological Activities in Paddy (Oryza sativa) Soil

Vijaya Vani K, Jaffer Mohiddin G, Srinivasulu M Anuradha B, Rangaswamy V

Pesticides are widely used in India for protection of agricultural crops from pests. However, these pesticides pose various threats to organisms, including humans, and hamper soil microbial activity. Hence, they are a cause for concern, as a measure of soil fertility and health. A study was undertaken to assess the effect of endosulfan and quinalphos on dehydrogenase and phosphatase activities in paddy soil under laboratory conditions.

Discovery Agriculture, 2013, 1(2), 67-72

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Effect of Wheat Crop Varieties on Plot Combine Harvester

Patel SK, Kumar S, Yaduvanshi BK, Singh PK, Chinchorkar SS, Sayed FG, Khardiwar MS

The performance of the plot combine harvester manufactured by M/ S Wintersteiger, Austria (Model: Nursery Master Elite) was evaluated different varieties of wheat crop.

Discovery Agriculture, 2013, 1(2), 73-76

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