Agricultural experts from Israel would work with 75 Indian villages, including 30 in Haryana, to transform them into modern-intensive farms from the current traditional kind, said a key functionary of Israel’s agency for international development cooperation, Mashav.

These villages, chosen under the recently-launched Indo-Israel Villages of Excellence (IIVoE) scheme, are located close to existing Centres of Excellence set up by Mashav jointly with the Mission for Integrated Development of Horticulture of the Agriculture Ministry.

Similarly, 10 such villages will be identified in Karnataka and Maharashtra, and the rest in Gujarat, Punjab, Rajasthan, Tamil Nadu and Uttar Pradesh.

The idea is to increase net income and livelihood of farmers in these villages, helping to replicate the Indo-Israel model ecosystem in agriculture throughout the country.

“The partnership between India and Israel is led by India. Everything we put as an objective is something that our Indian partner has designed as objective. And then we (both India and Israel) as a team define exactly how to achieve this and set about to do it,” said Dan Alluf Counsellor for Mashav at Israeli Embassy here.

Currently, there are 29 Indo-Israel Centres of Excellence are operational across the country. Many more such centres are planned. The count is expected to go up to 42 in near future, Alluf said. These centres are mainly expected to help introduce better varieties of vegetable and fruit crops, train farmers in improved agronomic practices as well as introduce state-of-the-art technique in irrigation, nutrition and crop management.

These centres have been successful in introducing new horticulture crop varieties and tens of thousands farmers have been benefitting from adopting these crops as agricultural practices, said Alluf.