Eco friendly management of crop diseases using bio-agents

Technology adoption:

  • Area (ha) – 9025
  • of farmers: 25,000

Product: The most common bio-agents, Pseudomonas and Trichoderma are used as a prophylactic measure for the disease management of crops. The KVK has conducted many Front line demonstrations on the effective use of these bio-agents in Rice, Coconut, Betel vine, Ginger, Amaranthus, and Cowpea fungal diseases management using Pseudomonas and Trichoderma.

Process: In paddy, the bio-agent Pseudomonas is applied for seed treatment, soil application and foliar spray. The use of Pseudomonas against paddy diseases was demonstrated in Kuttanad and upper Kuttanad region. Prophylactic application of these bio agent resulted in 100% disease management and reduction in the use of fungicides. In coconut, the stem bleeding disease management was demonstrated by the application of Trichoderma fortified neem cake and swabbing of Trichoderma paste in the wounded region. In betel vine, effective control of the wilt and anthracnose diseases prevalent during monsoon season was demonstrated by the use of these bio-agents. The technologies were popularized through trainings, method demonstrations, FLDs, advisory services, FFS and through extension literature since 2005.


Remarks: Through the awareness programmes in collaboration with the State Department of Agriculture, more than 25000 farmers adopted the technology in an area of 9025 ha in the district. By this eco and farmer friendly technology, farmers could reduce the cost of cultivation and thereby increase the net profit.  The refined technology for coconut stem bleeding management using organics is included in the “POP recommendations – Crops – 2015” for Kerala state prepared by the Kerala Agricultural University. The bio-agents are being made available to farmers through KVK to meet the demand. So far more than 1.5 t bio-agents has been sold to the farmers. In all the crop disease management trainings emphasis was given in Trichoderma multiplication so that farmers can adopt the technology in household cultivation and thereby reduce environment pollution.

Diversification of coconut products for income enhancement of small and marginal farmers

Technology adoption:

  • Number of units established: 50
  • of farmers: 153

Product: Different Value added products from coconut viz. virgin coconut oil, confectionaries, instant curry mixes, soft drinks, and natural vinegar

Process: Coconut, the major crop of Kerala, of late is not able to support the livelihood of small and marginal farmers. Farm level value addition of coconut can be considered to be one of the viable options for improving the income of the farmers in the village level. This KVK has introduced an integrated value addition approach for coconut. Coconut milk of fully matured nuts is used for virgin coconut oil production and the left over kernel for the production of bakery products, different types of chutney powders and instant curry mixes. Coconut water is used for the production of soft drink and natural vinegar. Thus coconut based micro units provide opportunities for generating income for the rural women groups and small entrepreneurs. KVK-Alappuzha has conducted nearly 80 trainings with participation of about 1600 trainees from all the 14 districts of Kerala and from Nagercoil, Coimbatore, Tiruppur, Virudhunagar districts of Tamil Nadu.


Remarks: More than 90% of the trainees were rural women indicating their interest in the activity. The screw press for coconut milk extraction prevalent in market was modified for drudgery reduction. This along with the double sided, motorized coconut scraper was popularized through trainings and Front Line Demonstrations. Booklet on value added products from coconut was prepared with protocols for nearly 25 marketable products. Medicinal value of Virgin Coconut Oil was popularized through Virgin Coconut Oil Capsules in an EDP programme taken up with Karappuram Coconut Producer Company Ltd, Cherthala. KVK provided technical support to establish production cum training centres on value added coconut products at Balaramapuram,Thiruvananthapuram and at  KVK, North Goa. More than 50 groups initiated the coconut product diversification as a micro enterprise engaging 4-9 members and generating  more than 31000 working  days  per annum   and producing  90- 120 tons of product annually  worth  3.6 crores.

Profit maximization from dairy farming through a package of technological interventions

Technology adoption: 

  1. No of animals – 625
  2. No of farmers-450


Enhancement of income from dairy farming through a package of management practices viz., Stress management, feeding management, reproductive management and disease management.


            Different interventions as FLDs, Animal Health Campaigns and Method demonstrations at different parts of the district in which as much as 450 farmers partnered

  1. Stress management: Floor covered with Rubber mat (6’x4’ size/cow) and provided Automatic drinking system in cow shed
  2. Feeding management: Total mixed Ration (TMR) feeding @ 400 g/l milk yield to ensure availability of all nutrients uniformly and supplemented Rumen By-Pass Fat to avoid metabolic disorders during peak yield.
  3. Reproductive management: Crestoscope was used to detect the ovulation time. Also anoestrus cow was treated with hormonal preparation, CIDR to bring the animal to heat.
  4. Disease management: To control the vectors, Ayurvedic preparation called Kusum oil was applied externally @ once in 3 days. To prevent infectious and contagious diseases, disinfectant spray of 1,6 Dihydroxy  2,5 –Dioxohexane  Polymethyl derivative was used in the cow shed @ 10 ml/l water.


The experience and benefit of each technology was narrated by the partner farmers in the presence of department officials and local self government representatives on the occasion of field days and technology meets. The technologies were up scaled in convergence with ATMA, Dairy Development department and Animal Husbandry department. Extension literature, leaflets and popular articles were published in leading agricultural magazines. After knowing the above said technologies through visual and printed medias, 75 rural youth and 375 farmers approached KVK to start commercial dairy farming. About 1500 Help line services provided on the above said technologies throughout Kerala.  Increase in milk yield up to 1 litre/cow/day, milk price up to Rs.3/l. and the profit up to Rs.15000 /cow/ lactation could be achieved compared to the normal practices. On the average 10% increase in overall milk production was recorded in the district and incidence of infectious and contagious disease outbreak was reduced for the past 3 years.

Use of drum seeder for wet sowing of paddy for higher profitability and climate resilience in Kuttanad region of Kerala

Technology adoption:

  • Area (ha): 150
  • of farmers: 175

Product: Drum seeder is simple equipment for wet sowing of paddy in wetland situations. It has four seed drums with holes on both ends for dropping pre sprouted seeds at a spacing of 20 x 10 cm.

Process: Drum seeder was demonstrated and popularized by the KVK in Kuttanad region, the rice bowl of Kerala. By using the drum seeder, the seed requirement could be reduced to 30 kg/ha from 100-120 kg/ha usually used by farmers for broadcasting. Since the seeds were sown in lines keeping a spacing of 20x10cm, the plant population was optimum, the number of productive tillers was high and there was enough aeration in the crop stand which reduced incidence of pests and diseases and resulted in higher yield. Further the plants had strong anchorage in the soil which helped them survive lodging due to summer showers and wind in the harvesting stage. Thus this technology offered climate resilience and reduced the time taken for harvest by the combined harvester and thus the cost on harvesting by 40-50% due to the uniform population and non-lodging feature achieved. All these factors put together reduced the cost of cultivation by 10-20% and an increase in the net profit by Rs.20000 per ha.

Remarks: Considerable efforts were taken by the Krishi Vigyan Kendra to upscale this successful technology to the entire district by conducting Front Line Demonstrations at different parts of the region, demonstrations under ATMA and programmes of State Department of Agriculture in different panchayaths.  Partner farmers narrated their experience to selected farmers from adjoining villages in the technology meets organized. As a result of the efforts made by KVK for spreading this eco friendly and resource conserving technology, more than 125 units of drum seeders were sold in the district which shows the acceptability of this technology among the farming community. Department of Agrl. Development and Farmers’ Welfare, Govt. of Kerala has included this technology in the project for reviving the Kuttanad ecosystem with popularization of eco-friendly technologies and Good Agricultural Practices (GAP).

Traps for fruit fly management in mango and vegetables as an eco-friendly practice

Technology adoption:

  1. Area 8 ha
  2. No of farmers : 5398


Fruit fly traps using semiochemicals viz., MET and Cuelure Trap for managing mango fruit fly (Bactrocera dorsalis) and melon fly (B. cucurbitae), respectively, their demonstrations and popularisation among the farming community and production as per the requirement of the public.


Technology assessment and demonstration on fruit fly management through OFTs and FLDs have been initiated by this KVK since 2005. MET was first assessed for its efficacy in 2005 at selected homesteads of Chingoli panchayath and recorded 30% yield increase in mango. This was followed by FLD at Chettikulangara where around 35% reduction in pest incidence was noted. To promote the use of MET in homesteads, cluster based demonstration was carried out during 2016-17. Cuelure traps were tested in cucurbitaceous crops for their effectiveness during 2008-09 which was followed by demonstrations in 2011-12.  Infestation of fruit fly in bitter gourd could be reduced from 25-40% to 0.5-6% in the demonstration. Owing to the success of traps as a component in the integrated management of fruit fly, MET and Cuelure traps were made available to farmers through KVK at a reasonable price. Use of eco-friendly practices for fruit fly management is promulgated through various extension activities such as trainings, demonstrations, popular/research articles, FFS, seminars, exhibitions etc with the collaboration of State owned extension agencies.


Fruit flies cause a lot of economic damage in mango as well as vegetable crops, which are major crops of the district. Among the fruit flies, Bactrocera dorsalis can cause up to 80% damage in mango. B. cucurbitae is a major pest in cucurbitaceous crops like bitter gourd, snake gourd etc. Farmers rely on pesticide application to manage this menace in vegetables whereas; no specific practice is followed in case of mango. Behavioural control of fruit flies using semiochemicals can be utilised as a component in IPM. KVK-Alappuzha manufactures low cost fruit fly traps for making available to various stakeholders. Recently, many agencies including State Government organisations and private agencies have started manufacturing fruit fly traps and the use of these traps increased enormously as a result of the awareness created by the KVK. Sincere efforts were made to increase the availability of the traps and its use through collaboration with ATMA, VFPCK, Department of Agriculture and Farmers’Clubs which could result in a huge economic gain in long term.