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#WorldSoilDay – Soil Health Boosts Incomes and Education in India
In honor of World Soil Day 2017, the Harvest 2050 Blog highlights the importance of soil health in the lives of farmers and communities in this story from the 2017 Global Agricultural Productivity Report® (GAP Report®): A World of Productive Sustainable Agriculture.
Partnerships between the public sector, private enterprise and communities allow the participants to share the risks, responsibilities and benefits of their joint investments.
They offer an effective way to increase agricultural productivity and improve the nutrition and livelihoods of small-scale producers.
Since 2008, the Mosaic Villages Project, a collaboration between The Mosaic Company, The Mosaic Company Foundation and implementing partner, the S M Sehgal Foundation, has helped Indian farmers move out of poverty and achieve greater food security.
Mosaic’s investment includes funding and the expertise of Mosaic agronomists who work alongside local partners to train farmers in balanced crop nutrition and agronomic best practices.
A Comprehensive Approach
Mosaic and the Sehgal Foundation are engaged with farmers in remote villages in Rajasthan through the Krishi Jyoti Project.
Krishi Jyoti (or “enlightened agriculture”) has directly benefited more than 26,000 farmers from 60 villages and boosted cultivation across nearly 16,000 acres of land.
The project helps farmers improve the productivity of three crops: pearl millet, wheat and mustard. It focuses on five key aspects of agricultural production: soil health, seed and fertilizer, water management, agronomic training and market linkages.
Village leaders selected farmers representing all castes and landholding sizes to participate in the program.
With balanced crop nutrition practices — using the right mix of macro- and micro-nutrients to meet the needs of the crops and soils — together with agronomic expertise and financial support, farmers increased yields by as much as 35 percent over traditional farming practices.
Average income per acre has also grown between 4,480 Rs ($70 US) for wheat to 5,760 Rs ($90 US) for mustard.
Communities participating in the Krishi Jyoti Project are using the additional income to help create a better life for future generations. The S M Sehgal Foundation and Mosaic funded renovations for 20 schools in Alwar, Mewat and Sonipat — including adding sanitation facilities, safe drinking water systems and school kitchens.
Learn more about public-private partnerships that are transforming communities in India in the 2017 Global Agricultural Productivity Report® (GAP Report®): A World of Productive Sustainable Agriculture, pages 44-45.