An Israeli irrigation system. (Shutterstock) An Israeli irrigation system. (Shutterstock)
(Shutterstock)

A group of Indian farmers will arrive in Israel to learn how the Jewish state excels in the field of agricultural. 

By: United with Israel Staff

A group of 26 farmers from the Jharkhand region in India will arrive in Israel to learn new and advanced techniques in farming.

India’s Wio News reported last week that Jharkhand Chief Minister Raghubar Das announced the delegation last week on Twitter.

The farmers, accompanied by other state officials, will arrive for a four-day visit to Israel during which they will learn how to overcome challenges posed by lack of irrigation and how to generate “better produce like Israel,” which faced similar climate challenges in the years after its establishment.

“At present, the farmers here are facing challenges of lack of irrigation facilities and scarcity of land for agriculture. They are only farming one crop a year. However, Israel has overcome similar problems by using technologically advanced methods of farming. If our farmers learn those techniques, it will be beneficial for them and they can even overcome the present challenges,” PTI quoted Das as saying.

The chief minister explained that the farmers will serve as “master trainers” to relay Israeli know-how after returning to India.

Das further noted that while the Jharkhand region lags behind in grain production,its farmers hope not only to become self-sufficient, but also to supply grains to other states.

Israel’s Long History of Aid to Indian Farmers

While this is the first time that Jharkhand farmers are visiting Israel, it is far from the first Israel-India venture in agriculture.

Israel has a long and proud history of providing aid to Indian farmers.

In May, Tel Aviv University (TAU) and the Indian philanthropic organization TATA TRUSTS launched the Indian Centre for Agri & Allied Tech (I-CAT) whose objective is to bring Israeli expertise and innovation to farmers of the state of Andhra Pradesh in southern India.

In October 2017, thanks to Israeli drip irrigation, 15,000 farmers in Karnataka, southwestern India, harvested their first monsoon season crop in years.

Similarly, Israeli biotech company, BioFeed, developed a “no-spray” solution to kill the fruit flies that have devastated mango plantations in India.

In 2016, the Indian state of Haryana initiated micro-irrigation projects based on Israeli expertise at 14 sites. Israeli agricultural professionals work extensively in Haryana and neighboring Punjab, as well as around the country.

In December 2015, The Indo-Israel vegetable center of excellence in Haryana boosted the annual number of seedlings grown by state farmers from half a million in 2011 to six million in 2015. Farmers from Punjab, Rajasthan and Himachal Pradesh are also using the facility.

In April 2015, India signed a memorandum of understanding with Israel to set up a dairy development center in Haryan. It includes a model dairy farm with 110 cows to teach Indian farmers about Israeli techniques to increase milk production.

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