Agri Business

Kerala agri varsity installs ‘seed dispenser'

Our Bureau Thiruvananthapuram | Updated on April 10, 2012 Published on April 10, 2012

A ‘seedy' joint that serves a fruitful purpose! This is what visitors make of a novel farm-friendly venture by the Kerala Agricultural University (KAU) at the College of Agriculture, Vellayani, near here.

It has installed a seed vending machine at the college for the benefit of horticulturists in Thiruvananthapuram district.

Quality seeds are available at the press of a button here much like cash at automated teller machines. Vegetable farmers would no longer need to depend on unreliable sources for seeds whose quality is often suspect.

One needs to merely insert a ten-rupee note into the vending machine, and lo, a packet of seeds would come out tumbling.

Installed at the main college building, the machine can be programmed to dispense any type of seed. Fifteen types of seed packets would be made available to start with.

Part of a plan

This is being envisaged as part of the Rashtriya Krishi Vigyan Yojna to boost vegetable production in the State, says Prof L. Rajamony of the KAU.

“The project is aimed at harvesting technology to ensure food and nutritional security,” Prof Rajamony, who heads research coordination at KAU, added.

The seed vending machine is the result of research and discussions with a number of Indian and international companies over the last three years.

Seaga, a Delhi-based company, has been KAU's partner of choice in developing and deploying the machine installed at Vellayani.

KAU is teaming up with the Department of Agriculture, Kerala, and the State Horticulture Mission to popularise the machine among farmers and the public, Prof Rajamony said.

vinson@thehindu.co.in

Published on April 10, 2012
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