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Crop Information : Groundnut

Groundnut News: Digital Farming Practices Increase the Groundnut Yield by 30%

Hyderabad: Using cloud technology and business intelligence, farmers in Andhra Pradesh’s Kurnool district increased their per hectare groundnut yield by 30%.

Farmers in the district were advised through text messages on the best time of sowing and harvest depending on weather conditions, soil and other indicators to achieve optimal yield, as part of the Andhra Pradesh Primary Sector Mission (APPSM), which is also known as 'Rythu Kosam'.

This pilot was launched in June 2016 and was implemented in Devanakonda Mandal of Kurnool district with only groundnut crop. It was initiated by the state government and jointly executed by the International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics (ICRISAT) and Microsoft.

Joint media release by ICRISAT and Microsoft, said “Following the launch of the pilot in June 2016, that tested a new Sowing Application for farmers combined with a Personalized Village Advisory Dashboard for the Indian state of Andhra Pradesh, the results show a 30% higher average in yield per hectare.”

To promote digital farming practices in the state to disseminate information to the farmers and government officials involved with APPSM, ICRISAT adopted Microsoft’s Cortana Intelligence Suite including Machine Learning (ability of computers to learn without being specifically programmed) and Power BI (Business Intelligence).

The dashboard provided important insights around soil health, fertilizer recommendations, and seven-day weather forecasts derived from the world’s best available weather observations systems and global forecast models, using a Sowing Application combined with a Personalized Village Advisory Dashboard for AP.

To transform how small holder farmers tackle climate change to drive effective decision-making for their crops, this data was then downscaled for the highest possible accuracy at the village level.

Essential information such as sowing recommendation, seed treatment, optimum sowing depth, preventive weed management, land preparation, farm yard manure application, recommendation on harvesting, shade drying of harvested pods, and storage among others, farmers were sent ten sowing advisories starting June 10 via text messages in Telugu during the pilot.

Many farmers are showing interest to register their mobile phone numbers for receiving the advisories, said C. Madhusudhana, president, Chaitanya Youth Association and Watershed Community Association of Devanakonda.