Himachal to roll out Sustainable food systems platform, workshop at Nauni University

In a significant stride towards enhancing sustainable agricultural practices and strengthening the livelihoods of natural farmers, a Sustainable Food System Platform (SusPNF) is being rolled out in participatory collaboration between Dr. YS Parmar University of Horticulture and Forestry(UHF), Nauni, State Agriculture Department and Farmer Producer companies. This platform will be one of a kind in the country.

This initiative is part of the Memorandum of Association between the University, Prakritik Krishi Khushal Yojana(PK3Y) of the State Department of Agriculture, and the National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD). This collaborative initiative is aimed at empowering natural farmers and propelling advancements in the agricultural sector.

NABARD has designated the University as a Producer Organization Promoting Institution (POPI) for four Natural Farmers Producer Companies (N-FPCs), underscoring the university’s unwavering commitment to endorsing sustainable agricultural practices and contributing to the betterment of local communities. The POPI will leverage its expertise to facilitate Natural Farmer’s Producer companies in securing grants and assistance from NABARD within the framework of this alliance. The core objective is to fortify the capabilities of these FPCs and foster their growth by bridging the gap between available resources and the farming community.

Establishing a robust support ecosystem for natural farmers comprising crucial resources such as post-harvest assistance, mapping aligned with Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), and providing various technical support will be an essential part of this partnership. This comprehensive approach underscores the institution’s resolute commitment to instigate positive transformations within the agricultural domain.

“This partnership positions the university to make a positive and transformative impact on the agricultural landscape of Himachal Pradesh and highlights the comprehensive endeavors of the University to champion sustainable farming practices in the region. This will serve as a testament to the multi-dimensional approach adopted by the university to support natural farmers, transcending mere financial aid. As this collaborative journey unfolds, it is anticipated that these initiatives will pave the way for a brighter and more sustainable future for natural farmers and the broader agricultural panorama of the state,” Prof Rajeshwar Singh Chandel, UHF Vice-Chancellor.

Under this partnership, a SusPNF workshop will be organized at the Directorate of Extension Education of the University on Saturday in which all the stakeholders associated with this project will participate including the Secretary of Agriculture Himachal Pradesh, senior officers of the NABARD and State Project Implementing Unit PK3Y, the CEOs and Board of Directors of natural farming based FPCs and the university scientists associated with the project. Elaborate discussions on the sustainable natural farming food systems models will be held during this inaugural workshop.

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