KADS - The Kerala Agricultural Development Society
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 A Green Philosophy in Organic farming

Based on the principles of Environmental and public mindedness and health, ecological balance, fairness and care.

Kerala is a narrow strip of land in South India spread over an area of 38855 Sq.km with the Western Ghats and the Arabian Sea bordering it. Agriculture has always been the thrust area of Kerala’s economy. Kerala accounts for 88% of the country’s export earnings from pepper, 92% from rubber, 72% from cardamom, 54% from cashew kernels and 56% from ginger.


Idukki District is generally known as ‘the Spice District’ of the State and 95% of the farmers here belong to the small and marginal category. The district is known for its enchanting scenic beauty, pleasant weather, aromatic spices and natural tea gardens.
Kerala Agricultural Development Society (KADS) is a Charitable Organization formed for the development of the farming communities in Kerala. The mission of KADS is to secure fair price for farm produce by avoiding middlemen, promotion of organic production of quality agricultural produce, and assistance in sustainable management of natural resources through awareness campaign, promotion and practicing of eco-friendly agriculture. Production and marketing of spices and condiments like nutmeg, cardamom, pepper, cloves, vanilla, ginger etc. are promoter and monitored. Further crops and produce like cocoa, vegetables, tapioca and other tubers, coconut, arecanut, banana, rubber, coffee ornamental and medicinal plants, Planting materials, seeds and seedlings, and dairy products, egg, meat of goat rabbit and poultry, vermicompost, bio-pesticides and value added products also covered for development.
Objectives

The main objectives are the following:-
 

Farmers’ intervention for improving the existing marketing system by developing a farmer - controlled open marketing system.
Opening of an effective collection, transporting, storage and sales system for various products with farmers’ participiation.
Promotion and establishment of organic farming.
Promotion of organic certification of individual farmers and group certification under ICS.
Conduct seminars and workshops for farmers with assistance from Government and other agencies.
Production and distribution of bio fertilizers.
Restoration of the eco-system, conservation and improvement of the natural resources of farmers (soil, water and vegetation).
Assistance to farmers for scientific land utilization and effective scientific farm practices.
Operating an agro-service centre for farmers.
Popularising the use of proper and improved agro machinery, tools and implements.
Enhancement of the income generating capability of farmers through improved agricultural and allied activities.
Facilitating farmers’ access to modern developments in the field of agriculture through an agro-information and training centre
 
Establishment of a permanent infrastructure for storage and marketing of agricultural products.
Promotion of women’s participation in marketing various quality food items rich in balanced nutrients.
Promoting kitchen gardens, especially in the municipality area.
Promotion of traditional dishes and cooking methods by opening a Grameena Bhakshana Shala.
Establishment of sales points for natural and eco-friendly farm produce.
Channelling and effective utilization of various Government assistance programmes and funds from NABARD, National Horticultural Board, Agri-Business Consortium and other such agencies to redress farmers’ grievances.
 

Organic Farming and Group Certification (ICS)

KADS was appointed as a service provider under NCOF (National Centre for Organic Farming). ‘Indocert’ (Indian Organic Certification Agency) Thottumugham, Aluva, a non Governmental organization for according certification of organic farmers, was contacted and training programmes were conducted with their help from July 2002 onwards. Organic certification under Group Certification programme was initiated by KADS as early in July 2002. Now about 1000 farmers exist under various stages of certification as C1, C2 and C3 Organic Certifications.

KADS Organic Project has covers total organic area of 4460 Acres and there are 55 groups formed in 32 Panchayaths of Idukki, Kottayam and Ernakulam districts. Now the working area under ICS project of KADS is going to extend up to all districts of Kerala State shortly. By 2008, organic farmers under KADS can market their produces with logo and label as they are completing third phase of certification.

KADS is closely collaborating with Indian Organic Farmers Producer Company Ltd. (IOFPCL), Kochi. KADS has already taken share in IOFPCL and hoping to market organic products both certified as well as in conversional products very soon.

Idukki District is having the privilege of producing best quality spices, cool vegetables and other products. KADS is hopefully planning to have a very vital role in this direction.

KADS is aiming to implement organic certification under Internal Control System as early as possible and had submitted proposal to higher authorities to declare Idukki as Organic District of Kerala.

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