The government plans to select 200 groups every year.
Mumbai: In a bid to encourage group farming, the Maharashtra government plans to give Rs 1 crore incentive to farmers who will pool 100 acre of land and common resources for farming. The government aims to create 200 such farmers’ groups in the state so that resources can be used in common and farmers can derive more profit.
The agriculture minister, Pandurang Phundkar said, “We are expecting farmers to come together along with 100 acre of land and make a group. This group will be given Rs 1 crore to buy tractors, harvesters etc. This will increase farmers’ profit margins and help them share resources. There are a few individual examples of mechanised farming in the state which have been very successful and this is possible only if a group of farmers come together.”
It will be mandatory for farmers to register themselves with the agriculture department. The government will select 200 groups every year for group farming. It will also encourage a few farming-related side businesses such as fishing, distribution and sale of milk, the minister said.
The government will give a reward of Rs 25 lakh to farmers’ groups which do the best work. The decision comes on the back of the Maharashtra government’s observation that individual farmers have very small land parcels that are not financially viable. “Group farming will double the income of farmers and make farming financially viable,” Phundkar said.