During the last two decades, Indian agriculture has largely been influenced by factors such as globalization, trade liberalization and increasing role of private sector. A part from these the agricultural sector has been challenged by factors like shrinking resource base, changes in demand and consumption pattern, changes in farming systems including increasing diversification to high-value crops and climate change effect. KVK system plays an important role in technology application, demonstration and capacity development of famers in deciding technological options keeping in view of resources in terms of land, water, capital, labour etc. Technology application and demonstrations are the two engines of achieving Doubling Farmers’ Income (DFI). The DFI strategy include seven sources of income growth viz., (i) improvement in productivity; (ii) resource use efficiency or savings in the cost of production; (iii) increase in the cropping intensity; (v) diversification towards high value crops; (vi) improvement in terms of trade for farmers or real prices received by farmers; and (vii) shift from farm to non-farm occupations.
Technology Application for DFI would require a new approach which has to be distinct from the earlier approaches and to address issues like sustainability, resource and technology integration. Therefore, there is a need to emphasize new dimensions in technology application process viz., focus on application of biotechnology and tissue culture for multiplication of elite germplasm; use of biofertilizers, biopesticides and bioremediation of ground water; precision farming and mechanization for optimal use of precious resources and human labour for reducing the cost of cultivation; linkage with industry; and market driven and export oriented agriculture.
KVKs have to focus on application of cutting edge technologies; give thrust on post-harvest, food processing and value addition technologies; highlight quality in addition to increase in quantity for higher market price and return; protect IPR and farmers’ rights; integrate livestock, fisheries and other allied agro-enterprises with crop production; and exploit advances in information technologies for reaching the unreached. Soil health care, water harvesting and management, need based technologies and technology inputs, and farmer-friendly marketing are essential to help our hard working farm families for twofold increase in their income.