Central Island Agriculture Research Institute

Social Science Section


Research Achievements

Theme: Vulnerability studies of Island ecosystem and adaptive strategies to develop climate resilient agriculture
I. Climate resilience of CIARI technologies and impact study
Technology#1: Noni (Morinda citrifolia L.) var. CIARI Sampada
  • Study on the economics of climate resilient technologies revealed that Noni, a small tree of varied therapeutic values shows extremely wide range of environmental tolerances making it an invaluable component in various agroforestry systems aimed at climate change adaptation.
  • In 2006-07, CIARI promoted Noni cultivation across Andaman & Nicobar Islands for avocation in challenged areas after Tsunami 2004.
  • In 2007-08, through technology backstopping of the Institute, M/s. Andaman Plantations & Development Corporation Pvt. Ltd. a Kolkata based firm went for mass planting of Noni in 44 acres (17.8 ha) at different locations of South Andaman viz. 35 acres at Mithakhari, 8 acres at Minnie Bay and 1 acre at Bambooflat as intercrop in arecanut and coconut, all in rolling terrain and sloped hilly lands.
  • Though the economic yield started by the third year after planting, the firm could not find any prospective buyer till 2011-12 when it sold 3 tons of fruits to a Vadodara based processing company @ Rs.160/kg (Rs.140 for packaging and transportation + Rs.20 for fruit). Over the years, its sales destinations expanded to Chennai, Noida and Delhi @ 5 t/year.
  • Sensing the loss of market due to exorbitant freight cost involved in transporting the bulky consignments of fresh fruits to mainland, the firm established a Noni processing plant of 3t/day capacity at Mithakhari in 2016-17 through its sister concern M/s. Alberta Agro Pvt. Ltd. and since then selling Noni as processed material to mainland for further value addition.
  • As a low input-high value crop, Noni is an ideal choice for alternate/additional source of income from marginal lands. At a commercial scale, an organic Noni plantation of 14 ha with 10,000 trees amidst arecanut attracts an initial investment of Rs.24.00 lakh/annum for first 3 years. Thereupon, Rs.14.40 lakh and Rs.1.50 lakh are incurred annually towards operational cost and FYM application respectively. The economic yield starts from the 4th year with 20-30 kg fruits/tree/annum, selling of which to the nearby processing unit at the rate of Rs.20/kg fetches a gross income of Rs.4.00-6.00 lakh/annum. At the end of 10th year, the plantation incurs an undiscounted expenditure and gross income of Rs.1.83 crore and Rs.3.40 crore respectively. When discounted at the rate of 12% per annum, the same amounts to Rs.1.09 crore and Rs.1.52 crore respectively with a B-C ratio of 1.39.
  • In 10 years, an organic Noni plantation of 14 ha with 10,000 trees amidst arecanut incurs a discounted expenditure and income of Rs.1.09 crore and Rs.1.52 crore respectively fetching a BC ratio of 1.39. As a low input-high value crop, Noni is found to be an ideal choice for alternate/additional source of income from marginal lands.
  • Director, CIARI visiting the Noni plantation at ATIC
Technology#2: CIARI rice varieties
  • 515 Kharif Technological Demonstrations and 423 Rabi Technological Demonstrations have been conducted covering 156.89 ha across 118 cluster villages and 47.05 ha across 123 cluster villages, respectively in North & Middle Andaman and South Andaman districts.
  • The climate resilience of improved paddy varieties promoted/developed by CIARI was studied among 50 randomly selected farmers in Diglipur tehsil of North & Middle Andaman district and found that 52% cultivate only Gayatri variety of paddy.
  • In addition to Gayatri, 12% farmers cultivate Jaya, 8% Jaganath, 4% Jaya and Jaganath, 12% CIARI 7, 2% Jaya and DRR 42; and 2% MTU 1010.
  • Further, 2% farmers cultivate only Jaya and Jaganath, 4% Jaganath and 2% Lal Sona. 72% of farmers perceived that Gayatri withstands prolonged submergence during incessant rains, 64% felt that it has no lodging tendency thanks to strong stem (16%) and dwarfness (15%) which result in higher yield (42%). 38%, 24% and 10% of farmers felt that the variety attracts comparatively less pest, disease and weed incidence respectively, its late maturity helps to escape the untimely rains during the harvest season in September-October (35%).
  • While the variety demands no fertilizer (12%), it produces long tillers (8%).
  • A comparative economic analysis between improved and traditional paddy varieties shows that, Gayatri earns a net income of Rs.28,725/ha with B-C ratio of 1.48, while Jaya earns only Rs.8,580/ha with B-C ratio of 1.14 due to increased expenditure on one hand and reduced yield on the other.
  • Non-availability of seeds on time is the foremost constraint to adopt improved paddy varieties followed by non-awareness about available improve varieties, non-availability of seeds in enough quantities.
  • As most part of the produce is retained for household consumption, the taste preference of family members towards traditional varieties viz. Jaya and Jaganath and their suitability for specific traditional recipes deters them from pursue improved varieties.
  • Rice variety CIARI-7 at a farmer’s field
    in North & Middle Andaman district
Case study#1 Enhancing Nicobari tribal farmers’ income through technological intervention

The impact of customized technological intervention on the income, livelihood and dietary pattern of tribal households of Car Nicobar Island was studied in collaboration with KVK, Nicobar.

  • The KVK has adopted a Nicobari tribal farmer in 2016-17 who was practicing traditional tuhet system of subsistence farming and guided him with technological know-how and do-how of vegetable cultivation.
  • In a span of 4 years, the farmer has brought 4,550 m2 of his hitherto fallow land of 2 ha under vegetable cultivation.
  • By incorporating 8 to 15 vegetable crops, the diversification index of the farm increased from 0.58 to 0.77.
  • Even as the acreage under high value vegetables increased, he simultaneously accommodated other crops in minor proportions to tide over production and marketing risks.
  • Thus, through area expansion, technological adoption, diversified cropping pattern, efficient resource management and tactical marketing, the farmer’s gross income has increased 5.5 times from Rs.93,561 to Rs.5,15,935 while the net income has increased almost 12 times from Rs.36,711 to Rs.4,28,872.
  • The study emphasizes the importance of Institutional support in increasing the vegetable production; and income and livelihood of the tribal farmers in far flung regions of these Islands.
  • Nicobari farmer with his harvested produce from his farm
Case Study#2 Modified Broad Bed & Furrow System of cultivation for challenged areas
  • Shri Sudhir Dutta, a farmer in Creekabad village was earning a net income of Rs.12,000 to 15,000/ha by practicing a single crop of rice in his degraded land affected by Tsunami 2004. He was in search of technological intervention wherein he could cultivate and earn income to meet and enhance the livelihood of his family.
  • The Scientific team inspected the farm during 2017-18 and analyzed its cropping pattern, resource base, soil quality etc. and found the soil to be highly acidic due to sulphate content. Under NABARD funded project, an intervention was made wherein a farm plan has been formulated with a modified Broad Bed Furrow System of 1188 sq.m. comprising 2 beds and a furrow in-between as below:
  • As the farmer preferred brinjal which fetches good price in the market, seeds of high yielding variety of brinjal were provided to him for planting on the beds and suggested to apply poultry manure as soil amendment.
  • During the first year of intervention, the farmer has harvested 2.5 t of brinjal from 656 m2 bed area and earned a net income of Rs.58,000 within a span 5 months from an area which was hitherto uncultivable due to seawater intrusion after Tsunami.
  • Before intervention After intervention
    GM, NABARD with his team inspecting the field Brinjal crop at harvest stage
    Chairman & Members of Quinquennial Review Team interacting with the farmer
II. Study on tribal and non-tribal farmers’ perception about climate change
  • Study on the perception of farmers about climate change, its impact and indigenous adaptation strategies has revealed that 68% farmers have experienced decrease in the quantity of monsoon rainfall, increase in summer temperature, increase in chillness and duration of winter, decrease in the duration of monsoon with increase in the occurrence of cyclones, delayed onset and early withdrawal of monsoon.
  • They are convinced that climate change has adversely affected their farming through decreased yield in paddy and vegetables, increased pest, disease and physiological disorder in vegetables, depletion of water storage structures and increased disease and mortality in livestock.
  • 100% of both tribal and non-tribal farmers practice IFS. 93.3% of tribal and 79.1% of non-tribal famers have changed their livestock management practices with regard to shelter, feed, water etc. 62.8% of non-tribal farmers are manipulating the sowing date in tune with onset of monsoon, only 13.3% of tribal farmers do so. 44.2% of non-tribal farmers change the varieties in accordance to changing climate, only 3.3% of tribal farmers do so. 3.3% of tribal and7% of non-tribal farmers changed their crop; and 6.6% of tribal and 4.7% of non-tribal farmers changed the harvesting date. Apart from this, non-tribal farmers have changed their irrigation management practices (83.7%), land management practices (46.5%) and input management practices (34.9%).
  • Though 84% of sampled farmers are aware of Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana (PMFBY), 48% of them could not insure their crops due to tenancy and undivided ancestral land.
  • The logit analysis on these variables revealed that being tribal, male and more farming experience have increased the perception of farmers about climate change.
  • Maize cultivation under salinity condition at Guptapara
III. Impact of mini egg incubator on the livelihood of rural populace

Under Bio-tech Kisan Hub project, mini-egg incubators of 240 egg capacity have been installed at the residence of three Farmer Fellow Ambassadors (FFA) viz. Smt. Joshna at Nayagaon, Smt. Meenakshi at Indira Nagar and Smt. Binita Singh at New Wandoor. A survey has been undertaken to assess the utilitization of the incubators in accordance with the objectives of the project.

  • The FFAs are highly motivated to develop poultry farming on a commercial scale.
  • The incubators are properly maintained in operational mode.
  • They meticulously collect eggs from the neighbourhood and even from distant places; and provide hatching service for country fowl and duck to farmers; and Quail to CIARI at remunerative price.
  • The hatching efficiency of incubators is 90-93%.
  • FFAs are earning handsomely from a) hatching services @ Rs.7 to 20/egg, b) sale of chicks @ Rs.50 for 1day old, Rs.100 for 15 days old, Rs.120 for 1 month old and on weight basis thereafter.
  • FFAs expressed the need to increase the capacity of incubator in future to meet the overwhelming demand for hatching from the neighbourhood.
  • They are maintaining records but not in a scientific way. Hence it is felt necessary to impart a training programme for FFAs on scientific bookkeeping which is essential:
    1. To keep track of the enterprise's activity-wise income and expenditure
    2. To monitor the physical and financial progress of the enterprise.
    3. To study the impact of technological intervention done under the project.
    4. To study the extent of dissemination of the project benefits to other farmers in the neighbourhood.
  • Established mini egg incubator at Indiranagar Established mini egg incubator at Nayagaon

Theme: Transfer of technology, capacity building, policy support and market intelligence to stakeholders
I. Policy outlook on coconut entrepreneurship
  • The policy outlook based on the survey conducted among participants of one-day EDP on coconut value addition has revealed that non-availability of labour for cultural operations as major constraint to farmers while lack of supportive policies/schemes, prospective markets and advanced machinery as the major hindrance to processing industry.
  • As many of them wish to venture into the production of Virgin Coconut Oil, copra and neera & sugar products, they expect various institutional supportviz. simplified credit procedures and supportive policies.
  • From their suggestions, it has been inferred that location specific processing technologies has to be disseminated considering the resources, infrastructure and market opportunities, market intelligence and quality standards need to be strengthened, organic production of coconut should be projected to get higher price for coconut products of Andaman & Nicobar Islands, drudgery reducing and processing equipment should be introduced to strengthen on-farm and community level processing; and clusters should be formed at community level to strengthen product branding and marketing.
II. Developing Fish Catch App
  • Based on the information collected from the stakeholders, few modules of an innovative fish catch mobile app was developed to systematically record real time marine fish catch data from 51 landing centers across three districts of Andaman and Nicobar Islands.
  • User authentication login page was developed to allow registered users to login to the site and update catch data. The app integrated with web server and MySql data base server to store and retrieve data on real time have the ability to collect species-wise total catch landed at landing centre, vessel information, fisherman details, fishing effort and gear details.
  • Images and main features of 35 commercially important fish species belong to 3 different groups viz. Pelagic, demersal and oceanic fisheries are available in the app to identify the fishes.
  • This will facilitate to bring all scattered catch data under one roof so that researchers and planners can use this real time data for policy decision.
  • Glimpses of A&N Fish Catch App
III. Problems and prospects of vegetable value chain in North Andaman
  • Study on the problems and prospects of vegetable value chain in Diglipur market area revealed that 78% of farmers dispose their produce at wholesaler while 14% supply to retailer and 8% sell directly at Diglipur farmers’ market.
  • Cauliflower, cabbage, vegetable cowpea, brinjal, bhendi, chilli, knolkhol and beans are the major vegetables sent to Port Blair. With regard to input market, seeds, organic fertilizers and pesticides are purchased from the private dealers at Diglipur.
  • The major constraints in the input market are - delayed supply of seeds by Agriculture Department, spurious seeds of private dealers, unreliable organic fertilizers available at private dealers, exorbitant price of pesticides and lack of Institutional advisories for pest management.
  • The major constraints in the output market are – highly volatile price of vegetables, price manipulation by traders and lack of bargaining power due to perishability of the vegetables.
  • The findings of the survey were validated through Focus Group Discussion with 60 vegetable farmers of Madhupur and surrounding villages.
  • Farmer’s market at Diglipur
IV. Technological Demonstrations under National Extension Programme of IARI, New Delhi
  • The varietal demonstration conducted with ICAR-IARI varieties under National Extension Programme revealed that farmers are willing to adopt Moong var. Pusa Vishal owing to synchronized maturity and yellow mosaic virus resistance, cauliflower var. Pusa Meghna has good performance, tight curd formation than the local check White Veina, brinjal var. Pusa Uttam has less number of fruiting than CIARI Brinjal 1, but enjoys more market preference. It is susceptible to Fruit and Shoot borer than CIARI Brinjal-1, but ideal for round the year cultivation.
  • Performance of IARI Brinjal variety Pusa Uttam
    in a farmer’s field at Creekabad
V. Outreach programme of CIARI-AIR for Island farmers under COVID-19 arena
  • Keeping in view the MHA guidelines on preventive measures to be adopted while undertaking any activities benefiting the farmers, CIARI has launched an “Outreach Programme for Island farmers under COVID-19 Arena” on 16th July 2020 marking the 92nd Foundation Day of ICAR, in collaboration with All India Radio, Port Blair to disseminate technical know-how and do-how on growing high yielding varieties of paddy in the lowland area and plantation, spices, fruits and vegetables in mid and upland area, Indian Major Carp (IMC) fishes in farm ponds besides rearing livestock.
  • The innovative programme has been designed in a unique way to disseminate the technology through Radio from its own campus, to address the need of the farmers practicing agriculture & allied activities and to guide them to have a good enterprise of crop-livestock-poultry-fish with backward and forward linkage in a systematic manner.
  • Overall, 71 topics of total duration 814’98” have been covered by 75 experts comprising Scientists, Senior Administrative Officer, Technical Officers, Subject Matter Specialists of KVK – North & Middle Andaman, South Andaman and Nicobar districts, GM, NABARD and progressive farmers. The programme was broadcasted from Wednesday to Saturday at 06.00 PM in Kisan Vani programme at 684 KHz MW, DD free dish radio channel No.25 &live streaming on Newsonair app.
  • Radio talk recording at Choupal

Scheduled Tribe Component

Under STC, following programmes have been organized to empower the tribal farmers of the Islands:

1. NASI training programme for Nicobaris
  • An awareness building and sensitization programmme on “Health, Nutrition and Environment” for Nicobari tribal farmers has been organized in collaboration with National Academy of Sciences, Allahabad. Consequently, two projects viz. piggery and horticulture were sanctioned with the financial outlay of Rs.30 lakhs.
  • Nicobari trainees of awareness building and sensitization
    programmme conducted by National Academy of Sciences, Allahabad
2. Foldscope training for Nicobaris
  • Foldscope is the ultra-affordable, paper microscope weighs only 8 grams. Designed to be extremely portable, durable, and to give optical quality similar to conventional research microscopes (magnification of 140X and 2-micron resolution), Foldscope brings hands-on microscopy to new places.
  • The magnification power is enough to enable the spotting of organisms such as Leishmania donovani and Escherichia coli, as well as malarial parasites.
  • A Foldscope can be printed on a standard A4 sheet of paper and assembled in seven minutes.
  • It is part of the "frugal science" movement which aims to make cheap and easy tools available for scientific use in the developing world.
  • A one-day workshop on “Role of Foldscope Microscopy in minimizing the risk of zoonotic diseases at field level, diagnosis of plant diseases and ensure the personal hygiene of tribal farmers” was organized in collaboration with ICAR-NIBSM, Raipur for Nicobarese tribal farmers at Harminder Bay, Little Andaman.
  • Nicobari trainees practicing the usage of foldscope
3. Horticulture based nutritious kitchen garden demonstration for Onges
  • The first visit to Dugong creek was made by the team constituting of Director CIARI, Director ANTRI and Dr S.K. Zamir Ahmed P.S. on 26/12/2017 to study the ground reality and prepare the plan of action. With the consensus of end user, It was deliberated to have a intervention of Horticulture based Nutritious Kitchn Gardn (HNKG) to enable the onges to get leafy vegetables, fruits etc for their nutritional security.
  • After approval on completion of the SOP, second visit was made by CIARI Team and AAJVS on 20/02/2019, to select and layout Horticulture based Nutritious Kitchen Garden in an area of 200 m2 in participatory mode involving the Onges which later on upscaled to 600 m2. Inputs were provided with technical know-how and the intervention was materialised. The total population Onges was 122 then.
  • Due to lockdown since March 2020, no such follow-up activity could be carried out due to GOI preventive measures on COVID 19, with special emphasis to save the ethnic tribes from the pandemic.
  • As the lockdown restrictions have been relaxed, it has been planned to distribute 150 vegetable seed kits to Onges whose population is now 126 and 50 vegetable seed kits to Great Andmanese whose population is now 76, through AAJVS.
  • CIARI team along with AAJVS representatives
    at Onge settlement
    An Onge displaying the harvested vegetable
    from the demonstration plot
4. Scientist-Farmer Interaction at Minicoy, Lakshadweep

    One Scientist-Farmer Interaction has been organized at the Regional Station in Minicoy, Lakshadweep wherein 300 vegetables kits were distributed to the trainees for growing under backyard to ensure nutritional security for the family. A total of 628 beneficiaries were targeted comprising of Nicobari, Onges, Great Andmanese & ST farmers of Minicoy through capacity building.

    CIARI’s stall at Regional Kisan Mela, Minicoy Administrator, Lakshadweep interacting
    with the Scientist, CIARI
5. Exposure visit of Nicobarese to National Banana Exhibition at Tiruchirapalli, Tamil Nadu
  • A panel of three Nicobari tribals (2 female and 1 male) were taken for an exposure visit to the National Banana Exhibition conducted by ICAR-National Research Centre for Banana, Tiruchirapalli, Tamil Nadu wherein they were imparted knowledge about latest agricultural technologies, banana diversity across Tamil Nadu, new banana varieties, value added products of banana etc. In an attempt to showcase the importance of banana in the livelihood of tribals in Andaman & Nicobar Islands, the panel of Nicobari tribals prepared and displayed 3 banana-based traditional food recipes during all the 3 days of the Exhibition and shared their farming experience with the visiting farmers from across Tamil Nadu.
  • stc
    Visitors of National Banana Exhibition relishing the traditional banana
    recipes of Nicobari tribes

Scheduled Caste Sub-Plan
Exposure-cum-Training programme for SC farmers of Tamil Nadu
  • An Exposure-cum-Training Programme on “Empowering Scheduled Caste Farmers of Tamil Nadu, the Coastal State of Mainland India through Agricultural Technology Intervention for Nutritional and Livelihood Security” was organized in collaboration with Department of Horticulture & Plantation Crops and Tamil Nadu Horticulture Development Agency (TANHODA), Government of Tamil Nadu from 11thto 19thMarch 2020.
  • It is a first of its kind programme, wherein 18 farmers representing 18 districts of Tamil Nadu along with a Nodal Officer were given intensive technological exposition on Horticulture-NRM-Fisheries-Crops viz. modified ridge and furrow system for marigold, production technology for Dragon Fruit and Gerbera, alternative propagule for flowering plants, pot Anthurium, Red Ginger cultivation, nutritious kitchen gardening, air layering and harvesting technique in cinnamon and bay leaf, Andaman Kokum as a novel fruit crop for commercialization, grafting techniques in dioecious fruits and Noni as an avocation in marginal lands under Horticulture; vermicomposting from plantation wastes, lined pond for rainwater harvesting and Water Resource Development Plan under Natural Resource Management; carp grower feed production technology, captive breeding of marine ornamental fishes, value addition in fish under Fisheries Science; and improved seed production of rice, pulses, brinjal and salinity micro-plots for paddy under Field Crop Improvement & Protection.
  • Besides, the trainees were taken for a biodiversity transect through the rain forests up to Middle Andaman to enlighten about the forest fabric of the Islands, prospects of mangroves as a bio-shield against coastal disasters, the geomorphological features of limestone caves, mud volcanoes and the role of World Coconut Germplasm Centre in conserving coconut biodiversity. They also visited Shaheed Dweep, the declared organic Island to know about the intricacies of organic farming in the Islands. On-farm interaction with selective progressive farmers of South Andaman practicing oyster mushroom, Integrated Farming System, floriculture, betel vine cultivation, poultry hatchery and organic farming under the technical guidance of the Institute paved a platform to share the mutual farming experience and future trade linkages. Planting materials and critical inputs were given to take forward the Institute’s technologies in Mainland.
  • A compendium entitled “Technological Exposition in Horticulture-NRM-Fisheries-Crops for Empowerment of Scheduled Caste Farmers of Tamil Nadu, the Coastal State of Mainland India for Nutritional and Livelihood Security” a pictorial documentation of the training programme was brought out, which will go a long way in guiding the trainee farmers of Mainland to pursue the learnt technologies of Island ecosystem in their own set up and to cherish the memories of the Islands forever. It will also act as a ready reckoner of the Institute’s R&D activities and technologies for the benefit of the Island farmers, extension personnel and the policy makers of Andaman & Nicobar Administration.
  • Trainee farmers with organizing committee Bulletin published on the programme

Flagship programme
I. Mera Gaon Mera Gaurav
  • During 2020, an Interaction Meeting was organized with 20 farmers of Collinpur to deliberate on production technology of vegetables, fruits and spices; animal health management and rearing; and post-harvest utilization and value addition of fish.
  • Two farmers of Dundas Point were guided on “High Density Black Pepper Cultivation on Glyricidia” which motivated them to purchase 100 black pepper plants from the Institute.
  • During COVID lockdown, mobile based agro advisories were given to 175 farmers of Shoal Bay, Kalatang and Govindpuram on vegetable cultivation, salinity management, pond management, live fencing, crop production, plant protection, fisheries and livestock health care, Market information and loss reduction.
  • A farmer of Caddlegunj was guided on cultivation of native fruits who purchased planting material of 14 species of fruits and spices from the Institute for cultivation.
  • DISHA, an NGO at Caddlegunj was guided on establishment of new plantation of native fruits and spices which purchased planting material of 12 species of fruits and spices for cultivation.
  • A farmer at Mithakhari was guided on scientific goat farming. Farmers of Port Mout and Chouldari were surveyed to know about the impact of COVID on vegetable, poultry and livestock farming.
  • MGMG Team interacting with a vegetable
    farmer at Port Mout
    MGMG Team interacting with Gram Pradhan,
    Chouldari Panchayat
    MGMG Team distributing palak seeds
    to participants
    MGMG Team providing agro-advisories
    to farmers
    MGMG Team guiding farmers in improved
    pepper cultivation
    MGMG Team inspecting the goat shed of
    Shri Chandan at Mithakhari
II. Bharat ka Amrit Mahotsava - India@75

    Under Bharat ka Amrit Mahotsava programme, a weekly lecture series was launched from 17.04.2021 on the theme “Doubling Farmers’ Income through Agricultural and Allied Technologies”. The lectures are delivered every Saturday by the Scientists of CIARI and external experts on the topics pertaining to agriculture, horticulture, animal husbandry, fisheries, natural resource management, agricultural engineering, entrepreneurship, marketing, post harvest management, transfer of technology, government programmes etc. fostering farmers’ income. As of now, 7 lectures have been delivered on Entrepreneurship development in goat farming, Potential of Bread fruit as future food crop of bay Islands, Doubling farmers income - A fisheries perspective, Weather management to improve agricultural production, Advances in Vegetable Production & Seed Production Technology, Nutrition and health management in freshwater aquaculture sector of the Islands, and Scope and prospects of freshwater ornamental fish culture in the Islands.