Soil Health Card Campaign in India
Narendra Mod, the government of India had introduced a new soil health card scheme in February 2015, which has continued this year. This scheme is designed to help farmers in India achieve a better harvest and healthier yield. The key objective of this scheme was to find ways to improve fertility of the soil, rather than comparing the different types of soil. The soil health card scheme will observe the quality of the soil, the key functional characteristics, and the water and nutritional elements of the soil. Farmers are monitored and evaluated on a regular basis. The government wanted to help farmers choose the right type of fertiliser for their fields, in order to improve productivity and reduce cost and waste.
The Agriculture Development Office has been divided into 4 teams, and they have collected 165 samples of soil and 36 samples of water. The government of India aimed to carry out a campaign for the soil health card scheme in 75 villages, and has been ongoing in 2016. This month, the Agriculture Development Office teams plan to carry out this campaign in 8 villages for the month of May this year. According to Agriculture Development Officer, Dr Baljinder Singh, mobile soil testing labs will be used to carry out this campaign in the 8 villages.
Farmers will be informed on how much fertiliser that they are using, and how they can improve on it. This campaign is still being carried out in other villages in India to achieve a consistent and successful campaign. The results will be analysed based on the latitude and longitude of these areas by using an intelligent GPS system. By the end of February the government wants to give out 11.2 million soil health cards to farmers this year, and 140 million soil health cards by the end of 2017. It will be a great achievement to see farmers have higher yields at much lower costs in the years to come.