ICAR – Indian Institute of Oilseeds Research, Hyderabad in association with ATMA, Chandrapur, Maharashtra had organized a training cum interaction on technologies for increasing safflower productivity and quality seed production on 11.11.2020 to enhance the Productivity through quality seed production and adoption of BMPs. About 300 farmers in different groups and extension personnel from the potential safflower growing region of Maharashtra had participated in the programme with the support and active involvement of safflower AICRP, Solapur centre and ATMA, Chandrapur, Maharashtra. The scientists from IIOR, Hyderabad; Dr. Uday M. Patil, Project Director, ATMA, Chandrapur; Dr. C. Sudhakar, Principal Scientist, ARS, PJTSAU, Tandur; Dr. S.K. Shinde, Breeder, Dr. S.V. Khadtare, Agronomist and Dr. D.R. Murumkar, Pathologist from AICRP, Solapur; Dr. Ghuge, AICRP, Parbani and extension personnel from KVKs and other dignitaries had participated. Dr. N. Mukta, Principal Scientist, ICAR-IIOR welcomed the gathering.
Dr. M. Sujatha, Director, IIOR presented the status of safflower cultivation in the country and briefed about the cluster demonstrations, importance and necessity of quality seed production, adoption of best management practices and farm mechanization technologies etc., for realizing higher yield and entrepreneurship development for increasing income of the farmers. The technologies being made available from ICAR and SAUs with latest high yielding varieties/hybrids and production and protection technologies as Best Management Practices would result in higher yields and profits. Dr. Uday M. Patil, Project Director, ATMA, Chandrapur addressed the farmers and focused on the issues of farm mechanization in quality seed production. Dr. Ravindra Manohare, Dy. Director of Agriculture, Maharashtra appreciated and complimented the efforts of ICAR-IIOR in embarking on BMPs and seed production in farmers’ fields. Dr. Khadtare, highlighted the need for adopting the technologies from sowing to marketing that are aimed at realizing higher yield and reducing the cost of cultivation and achieving higher input use efficiency. Dr. Sudhakar, highlighted about the farm mechanization and explained the necessity and economics of small scale oil extraction unit. Dr. P.S. Srinivas, Principal Scientist, ICAR-IIOR and Dr. D.R. Murumkar, Pathologist, AICRP, Solapur briefed the plant protection measures.
During the question-answer session, farmer to scientists interaction on different components of BMPs from soil moisture conservation to site specific crop management, application of available production and protection technologies was discussed and clarified various issues raised by the farmers. Many participating farmers interacted to express their problems in safflower cultivation and scientists clarified their queries.
The participating farmers are highly enthusiastic to grow safflower as ideal crop for diversification with the perceived advantages and economics, which is a great opportunity for large scale expansion of safflower in the Chandrapur region and adjoining areas of Maharashtra. ICARIIOR has assured for the supply of quality seed of safflower for crop expansion in the region. Dr.Jawahar Lal, Sr. Scientist and Officer In-charge, Seed section, IIOR had coordinated the entire programme. Dr. M. Y. Dudhe, Senior Scientist served as moderator during the virtual meet and facilitated fruitful discussion.