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AGRICULTURE

48.9 Crore Soil Health Cards Issued to Farmers

New Delhi: September 7,2012

The Government is according high priority to soil testing and is providing assistance to State Governments/ Union Territories for setting up soil testing laboratories for augmenting existing capacity of States for soil testing for issuing soil health cards to farmers. However, this requires efforts by State Governments/ Union Territories in mobilizing technical man power for soil testing and issuing soil health cards. About 4885.25 lakh (provisional) soil health cards have been distributed to farmers up to March 2012.

So far, 1049 soil testing laboratories have been set up in the country.

Imbalanced use of fertilizers, low addition of organic matter and non-replacement of depleted micro and secondary nutrients over the years, has resulted in nutrient deficiencies and decrease in soil fertility in some parts of the country, particularly in intensively cultivated Indo-Gangetic plains. However, balanced and judicious use of fertilizers does not deteriorate soil health.

The measures taken by the Government to improve soil health include promotion of soil test based balanced and judicious use of chemical fertilizers, bio-fertilizers and locally available organic manures. National Project on Management of Soil Health & Fertility (NPMSH&F) has been introduced during 2008-09 to promote soil test based balanced and judicious use of chemical fertilizers in conjunction with organic manures.

Apart from the above, Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR) also imparts training and organizes demonstrations to educate farmers on these aspects.

This information was given by Shri Harish Rawat, Minister of State for Agriculture and Food Processing Industries in written reply to a question in the Rajya Sabha today.

 
PIB Release/DL/693
MD --SB

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