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West Bengal finds ways to increase organic farming
West Bengal state agriculture department is geared up to increase organic farming in the state. As part of its drive to increase organic farming, the state is focusing on increasing production of some of the aromatic rice varieties like Radhatilak, Dudhsar, Kalabhat, Kalonuniya. As of now, 17,807 hectares of land are used for organic farming. The department is planning to bring another 10,000 hectares under organic farming.

Gaja cyclone to hit farm shrimp production in India
Farm shrimp production in India is set to fall 15% this fiscal year, farmers and traders said, citing the extensive damage caused by cyclonic storm Gaja that hit Tamil Nadu earlier this month. They said the storm hit the seafood industry at a time when it was recovering from the impact of a fall in global shrimp prices.

Farmers organisation challenges change in recovery base of FRP in the High Court
Member of Parliament Raju Shetty has filed a writ petition in the Bombay High Court against the changes in the sugarcane recovery base done by the central government for 2018-19 sugar season. While increasing the fair and remunerative price of sugarcane by Rs 20/quintal of sugarcane, the central government also increased the sugarcane recovery base from 9.5% to 10%.

MoooFarm to train 2 lakh farmers in dairy skills
Australia-based MoooFarmMonday said it will train two lakh Indian dairy farmers by 2020 to develop their skills in areas like cattle nutrition with a view to increase farmers income by at least 20 per cent. MoooFarm will train the farmers through UDAY, a skill development firm, which is its partner in India.

Weather-based crop insurance expected next year
A global flood risk modeller has said it is expanding its insurance pricing scheme to cover the impact of weather on crops in India, coinciding with the start of rabi season. JBA Risk Management Managing Director Iain Willis said the India Weather-Based Crop Insurance Scheme (WBCIS) is expected next year.

Government to use technology to regularise unauthorised cultivation on government lands
The State Government will use software to deal with applications seeking regularization of unauthorized cultivation on government land. Revenue Minister R.V. Deshpande told reporters on Friday, that the government will accept requests from persons on regularisation of unauthorized cultivation till March 16, 2019. Such persons, however, have to make their requests in form 57 to the Tahsildar concerned

Paddy stubble catalyses employment, business in Punjab, Haryana
Paddy stubble, a cause of air pollution due to open burning, is driving new avenues in business and employment in the hinterlands of Punjab and Haryana. In the two breadbasket states of India, the agricultural remnant has become a dominant fuel for a string of biomass projects. Entrepreneurs, mostly well-heeled farmers, have set up firms to collect stubbles from farms by employing modern equipment and deliver to power plants.

Non-basmati exporters to get 5% benefit under merchandise exports scheme
Exporters from the world’s biggest rice exporting nation have been given a breather by the Indian government who will extend a 5% benefit to non-basmati exporters under the Merchandise Exports from India Scheme (MEIS) as relief from firm domestic prices that made exports less profitable. India exports a quarter of the rice in the world mainly to Africa, the US, Europe and South-East Asian nations

Maharashtras rabi sowing till mid-November trails by 54%
Maharashtras water woes have taken a toll on the winter-sown crop, with planting until mid-November trailing last year’s levels by 54%. Farm department officials also expect the summer-sown crop output to shrink because of drought-like conditions in many parts of the state. The drinking water situation is also worsening as the number of tankers supplying potable water to villages in drought-prone areas is up eight times from the same period last year.