Smallholders happy with Off-Seasonal Farming

Srikrishni Chaudhary, 38 years lives at Pathariya VDC-5, Khairipur in Kailali district with four members of her family. She was suffering from food scarcity due to low income and less productivity of her small piece of land instead of hard work. The family has only six Kattha of land and they used to do conventional farming in that small piece of land. Her husband used to migrate seasonally to India as non skill labour and she worked as agricultural labour in big landholder’s farm to solve their basic family needs.

SriKrishni Chaudhary

In 2012, she took membership of Srijanseel farmers Group formed by Digo Bikash Samaj, the implementing partner of LWF for Nepal Development Program. There are 15 members and all members took part in six month long Empowerment Education Class. With the project support, at the end of 2014, all 15 farmers cultivated vegetable in 25 Kattha (0,83 ha) of land. They got technical training and equipments support like spray tank, rose cane, and irrigation (two electric motor, 1 pump set and delivery pipe) to start commercial vegetable farming.

She was encouraged to grow market led off-season cucumber, cabbage, tomato, bitter gourd and chilly. She managed 0.20 hector (six Kattha) of land for commercial vegetable farming. She was provided with regular backstopping support from agricultural technician for nursery stocking, transplanting, disease and pest management, harvesting, post harvesting techniques and market linkages. In the same time, she got opportunities to participate in 10 days leader farmers’ practical training organised by the project. After taking the training, she has been providing technical support to other group members as well.

She earned NPR 89,231 within seven month by selling fresh vegetable in local market after household consumptions. Previously she used to grow wheat and paddy in her field and getting three quintal of wheat and six quintal of paddy having monetary values of about NPR 14,400.00 only or hardly able to feed for 5 months. Now, the vegetable farming changed their life and helped to ensure the food security round the year. All the group members have taken share from the cooperative namely Juntara Saving and Credit Cooperative Ltd at Pathariya and increased saving amount in respective group and cooperatives.SriKrishni Chaudhary2

All the group members are very happy and encouraged from the income of off-seasonal vegetables. So they plan to expand vegetable farming in additional one ha of land by leasing. Nowadays, both husband and wife are engaged in vegetable farming and preparing seedlings for coming season and finally stopped to migrate India. She thanked to LWF Nepal and Digo Bikash Samaj for providing technical support and other equipments. Lastly she suggested other farmers too to expand off-seasonal vegetable farming to raise their income and locally self-employed.