Kiwi agency provides Rs 5m aid to NARC

Kathmandu, March 9:

The New Zealand Agency for International Development has agreed to provide technological and financial support of Rs 5 million every year to Nepal Agriculture Research Council (NARC) through New Zealand Institute for Crop and Food Research Limited (CFR).

The Rs 5 million assistance would focus on improving the quality of on-farm winter and summer fodder crop production and animal feeding system.

CFR and NARC today signed a Memorandum of Understanding to begin the project named as Scientific, Technological and Business Cooperation for Nepal-Sustainable Animal Fodder Systems for Improving Household Incomes. The project will run for the next three year, according to the MoU.

“The main purpose of the project is to improve the quality of on-farm winter and summer fodder crop production and animal feeding system to improve animal health, fertility and milk yield,” said Dinesh Pariyar, project coordinator. He said, “The domestic animals would give two to four litres of extra milk after feeding fodders produced by those farmers who participate in the project,” he said adding, “This would help the farmers generate more income.”

The project would cover six districts - Sunsari, Sarlahi, Banke, Kaski, Dhading and Kavre and would form six clusters of 50 farmers each in six district to build technical capacity and to familiarise them with on-farm fodder extension packages. He said, “Out of 300 farmers participating in the project, 50 per cent would be female and efforts would be made to reduce their heavy work loads.”

Pariyar said the project has already selected farmers in three districts, adding that 700 farmers, other than the participants, would frequently visit the site to know about the project’s development.

The project is also expected to help farmers make able to produce high quality fodder on their land.