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Home > Countries > Nepal > Meeting in Biratnager
SRI Collaboration Spreading in Nepal
Meeting in Biratnagar, 2005

The number and range of institutions working together on SRI evaluation and promotion in Nepal is expanding, as seen from a meeting organized and hosted by the District Agricultural Development Office (DADO) in Biratnagar, which serves Morang District, the largest rice-growing district in the country.

Participants, including SRI farmers and representatives from different organizations, discussed SRI experiences and its potentiality and problems for the dissemination in wider areas. The following persons attended this meeting:

1. Regional Director, Agriculture Research Center, Tarahara
2. Mr. Khagandra Siktel, Executive Director, Madan Memorial Council,
    Agriculture Technical School, Mangalbare, Morang
3. Mr. Bashudev Dahal, General Secretary, MDMS (NGO), Biratnagar
4. Mr. Nabin Karki, Agriculture Officer, Rural Rehabilitation Nepal
5. Mr. Lokendra Karki, Team Leader, CDRC, Biratnagar
6. Mr. Padam Singh Thagunna, Field Coordinator, Li-BIRD (NGO), Sunsari
7. Mr. Sunial Neupane, Saptakoshi FM Station Manager, Biratnagar
8. Ms. Noora Singh, Sr.Res. Assoc., Winrock International, Kathmandu
9. Mr. Jiwan Acharya, Res. Officer, Winrock International, Kathmandu
10. Mr. Kedar Bahadur Shrestha, Sr. Agric. Dev. Officer, DADO, Morang
11. Mr. Ashok Kumar Das, Hort. Development Officer, DADO, Morang
12. Mr. Rajendra Uprety, Agriculture Extension Officer, DADO, Morang
13. Mr. Ram Prasad Shiwakoti, Planning Officer, DADO, Morang
14. Mr. Kashi Kumar Chaudhari, Jr. Technician, DADO, Morang
15. Mr. Rudra Phunyal, Jr. Technician, DADO, Morang
16. Mr. Ramdev Singh, Jr. Technical Asst., DADO, Morang
17. Mr. Ram Prasad Pokharel, Program Officer, Saptakoshi FM
18. Mr. Kishor Luintel, representing SRI Farmers, Jhorahat
19. Mr. Anantaram Majhi, representing SRI Farmers, Baijanathpur
20. Mr. Danbahadur Rajbansi, representing SRI Farmers, Baijanathpur
21. Mr. Udaya Rajbansi, representing SRI Farmers, Baijanathpur
22. Mr. Sanjaya Rajbansi, representing SRI Farmers, Baijanathpur
23. Mr. Pragayan Magar, representing SRI Farmers, Lakhantary
24. Mr. Manoj Singh, Sisbani Jahada
25. Mr. Ramesh Chaudhary, representing SRI Farmers, Keraown
26. Mr. Ganesh Rajbansi, SRI Farmers, Dadarbairea.
27. Mr. Kalayan Rai, representing SRI Farmers, Kashani

The meeting was organized to discuss possibilities and problems of SRI dissemination in larger areas of Morang and other districts of Nepal. Winrock International is preparing a CDM project proposal on SRI, collaborating with DADO Morang addressing issues of possible reduction in greenhouse gas emissions with SRI. So Winrock representative were most interested to know the possibility of SRI adaptation in larger areas.

All participants actively participated in the discussion. Farmers' representatives were very confident about SRI dissemination. If they can get good means of weed management, SRI will be spread quickly in larger areas, they assured the meeting. Availability and use of rotary weeders will be one solution, but there should be also improve the efficiency of weeder design.

The main conclusions of the meeting fell into two groups: existing difficulties/problems faced by farmers; and solutions for further development.

1. Timely availability of irrigation water is still a problem: Large rice-growing areas of Morang District are under the Sunsari-Morand Irrigation Project (SMIP) command area and water distribution/management is under the control of the Irrigation Department. In general, farmers do not get sufficient information about water availability in time. This makes it difficult to plan for using SRI methods (seedling-transplanting), and many times farmers' seedlings become very old or are damaged by drought.

2. Weeding: Weeding is the main problems farmers face after reliable irrigation water. Farmers want a good solution for this difficulty before increasing their SRI area. For this season, farmers anticipated the possibility of using rotary weeders. But due to delays in weeding, they were not very satisfied with the weeders' performance. They suggested that it is necessary to improve the efficiency of present weeders for extensive use in larger areas.

3. Farmers want more training and information: Farmers still feel that they need more information regarding SRI and its proper management. Some farmers planted SRI rice seedlings at 30 inches distance, for example, instead of 30 cm. Farmers assured the Winrock International team that SRI is possible to spread in larger areas. But for this to happen, we need to manage the above-mentioned difficulties.

To solve these difficulties, the following recommendations were made by the meeting.

1. It is necessary to coordinate with the management of SMIP for proper water distribution and control. DADO will take initiative for this to achieve SRI-friendly coordination with SMIP.

2. Weeder efficiency should be improved. Side-by-side tests should be done to evaluate this, and also tests should be done to find out suitable weedicides for weed management in larger areas.

3. More training and frequent visits of SRI trainers in SRI areas is necessary to provide more complete information regarding this method. To implement this recommendation, DADO, NGOs and leader-farmers will take further steps to provide information.

4. Winrock International will test and make available information regarding GHG. Besides this, participants are agreed to test SRI in their areas and to share information and experiences with each other.

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