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Farm Sector Development Department

The Farm Sector Development Department (FSDD) was created out of NABARD’s erstwhile Development Policy Department - Farm Sector.

The objective of the department is to formulate policies and implement multifarious farm sector initiatives under various programmes aimed at:

  • Conserving and managing natural resources
  • Accelerating ground level credit flow by rural financial institutions
  • Promoting incremental agricultural production and productivity
  • Generating rural employment
  • Raising the standard of living of rural poor through credit and grant
  • Formulating appropriate policies concerning agriculture and allied sector activities, natural resource management, climate change adaptation and mitigation etc., within the overall policy framework of Government of India

FSDD manages the following funds

  • Watershed Development Fund (WDF)
  • Tribal Development Fund (TDF)
  • Producers Organization Development Fund (PODF)
  • ‘Producers’ Organization Development and Upliftment Corpus’ (PRODUCE) Fund
  • Central Sector Scheme for Promotion and Nurturing of Farmers Producers Organisations (FPOs)
  • Farm Sector Promotion Fund (FSPF)

Core functions of the department

a. Watershed Development Fund (WDF)

Rainfed areas, which account for 51% of the cultivated area, play a significant role in food production, contributing 40-45% of the total food production. To address the issues in rainfed farming, NABARD entered into watershed development space in the year 1992 through KfW assisted Indo-German Watershed Development Programme (IGWDP) in Maharashtra, wherein participatory approach of watershed development was adopted on a large scale for the first time.

Based on the success in implementation of the participatory watershed development under IGWDP, Watershed Development Fund (WDF) was set up at NABARD in 1999-2000 with an initial corpus of Rs 200 crore contributed equally by GoI and NABARD. It is augmented over the years through the interest di?erential earned under RIDF.

b. Tribal Development Fund (TDF)

Based on the successful experience of Adivasi Development Programmes, NABARD embarked upon an ambitious programme of replicating the small orchard of one or two acre with multiple crops) model across the country. In this direction, Tribal Development Fund (TDF) was created by NABARD with initial corpus of Rs 50 crore, out of its profits for the year 2003-04. The Fund has grown over the years and the credit balance as on 31 December 2023 was Rs 1,207.56 crore with total committed sanction of Rs.747.43 crore. The projects under TDF are implemented by collaborating with State Governments, Krishi Vigyan Kendras (KVKs), NGOs and corporates. A comprehensive tribal development programme having small orchard as the core component is being implemented for improving the livelihood of tribal population. Over the years, livelihood interventions with non-orchard activities viz. animal husbandry, sericulture, lac, Non-Timber Forest Products (NTFPs) etc. have also been included to cover landless tribal families.

c. Promotion of Farmer Producer Organisations

Farmer Producer Organisation (FPO) is a legal entity formed by primary producers, viz. farmers, milk producers, fishermen etc. Producer Organisations have been considered to be one of the effective means of linking small producers with the agricultural value chain for the purpose of enhancing net income of producers. NABARD provides financial and development support to FPOs through the following programmes:

i. Producers Organisation Development Fund (PODF)

Recognising the strength of POs, NABARD created a dedicated fund “Producers, Organisation Development Fund (PODF)” during 2011, to support these organisations on three levers i.e. credit facilitation, capacity building and market linkage support. In addition, grant support is also made available for business incubation services, skill building, documentation of successful models, ICT application in business management, etc.

NABARD has also introduced a new scheme i.e. Producers’ Organization Development Fund – Interest Differential (PODF-ID) as the corpus has been augmented by way of appropriation of interest differential out of RIDF, for the promotion and nurturing of 3,000 FPOs.

ii. ‘Producers’ Organization Development and Upliftment Corpus’ (PRODUCE) Fund

PRODUCE Fund of Rs 200 crores was created by the Government of India in NABARD in 2014-15 for building 2,000 Farmer Producer Organizations (FPOs) in the country. The aim of the PRODUCE Fund is to promote new FPOs and support their initial financial requirements, to make them credit worthy, commercially vibrant and sustainable business enterprise of farmers.

iii. Central Sector Scheme for Promotion and Nurturing of Farmers Producers Organisations (FPOs)

The GoI has announced Central Sector Scheme on Formation and Promotion of 10,000 FPO and NABARD is one of the Implementing Agencies. The aim of the scheme is to promote new FPOs and support their initial financial requirements to make them credit worthy, commercially vibrant, and as a sustainable business enterprise for farmers. BIRD, Lucknow act as Nodal Training Institute for the scheme of CSS on FPOs. Credit Guarantee Fund of Rs 1,000 crore with equal contribution from GoI and NABARD has been envisaged under NABSanrakshan, a subsidiary of NABARD.

d. Farm Sector Promotion Fund (FSPF)

Farm Sector Promotion Fund (FSPF) was created in NABARD by merging two erstwhile funds, viz. Farm Innovation and Promotion Fund (FIPF) and Farmers' Technology Transfer Fund (FTTF), on July 26, 2014. The Fund focusses on promoting innovative and feasible concepts/projects and transfer of technology for enhancing production and productivity in agriculture and allied sectors.

3. Broad achievements of the Department (As on 29 February, 2024)

a. Watershed Development Fund

Rainfed areas, which account for 51% of the cultivated area, play a significant role in food production, contributing 40-45% of the total food production. To address the issues in rainfed farming, NABARD entered into watershed development space in the year 1992 through KfW assisted Indo-German Watershed Development Programme (IGWDP) in Maharashtra, wherein participatory approach of watershed development was adopted on a large scale for the first time. Based on the success in implementation of the participatory watershed development under IGWDP, Watershed Development Fund (WDF) was set up at NABARD in 1999-2000 with an initial corpus of Rs.200 crore contributed equally by GoI and NABARD. It is augmented over the years through the interest di?erential earned under RIDF. Cumulatively, 2684 projects have been successfully completed/closed against the sanctioned 3,714 watershed development and related projects, covering an area of 26.87 lakh ha. The cumulative grant assistance committed under all programmes is Rs 2750.31 crore, out of which an amount of Rs 2204.18 crore has been released as on 29 February 2024. As on 29 February 2024, 1031 watershed development and related projects are under various stages of implementation across 29 states.

Watershed development and related projects

Under watershed development, the various sub-programmes currently under implementation are as follows:

  • Integrated watershed development with climate proofing (including CSR collaborated projects)
  • Agroecology-JIVA
  • Climate Proofing in completed watershed projects (WDF-CP)
  • Springshed Development Programme in NE and hilly region.
  • Soil and water conservation promotional measures and other farming practices in the dryland/ watershed areas on non- watershed basis.
  • Pilot projects on reclamation of Alkaline soils through rain water management with watershed/landscape approach in Punjab & Haryana.
  • Soil Restoration and Rehabilitation of Degraded Soils for Food Security (Climate Proofing Soil Project) through KfW, Germany
  • Web-based monitoring of watershed projects

i. Integrated watershed development with climate proofing (including CSR collaborated projects)

Integrated watershed development programmes are implemented in two phases – (i) Capacity Building Phase (CBP) and (ii) Full Implementation Phase (FIP) in participatory mode, with the active involvement of Village Watershed Committees (VWCs) and Project Facilitating Agency (PFA). The projects are being implemented in 20 states, namely Andhra Pradesh, Assam, Bihar, Chhattisgarh, Gujarat, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Jammu & Kashmir, Jharkhand, Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Odisha, Punjab, Rajasthan, Tamil Nadu, Telangana, Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand and West Bengal. As on 29 February 2024, 1202 WDF projects have been sanctioned with financial outlay of Rs.1083.91 crore, against which an amount of Rs.697.82 crore has been disbursed.

ii. Agroecology-JIVA

JIVA, an agro-ecological transformation programme has been launched in the year 2022 to pioneer and scale up agro ecology as a strategic and transformational approach in watershed and tribal development projects, leveraging the pre-existing natural and social capital. The key aspect of such transition is effecting ‘behavioural change’ through farmer led extension. As first of its kind programme, 24 pilot projects, including watershed and tribal areas, covering five agroecological zones in vulnerable rainfed areas, across 11 states have been sanctioned. JIVA adopts natural farming as its cardinal principle, balancing ecology and economy in the rural ecosystem following a natural progression (farmer-farm-landscape). Designed in tune with FAO framework on agroecology, natural farming practices under JIVA promote diversified climate resilient crop systems (crops-livestock-trees), rejuvenation of biological processes, natural methods of pest and nutrient management and efficient management of rainfall and soil moisture. While placing soil at the heart of the system JIVA will enable local communities to protect and improve their environment and wellbeing by creating positive impacts through working in harmony with nature. Based on the success of pilot projects, they are expected to graduate to next phase i.e. upscaling and consolidation phase. Further, scaling up across Natural Resource Management projects is expected in the coming years, thus giving Agroecological orientation. As on 29 February 2024, 15 JIVA projects have been sanctioned with financial outlay of Rs.4.2 crore, against which an amount of Rs.3.03 crore has been disbursed.

iii. Climate-proofing in completed watershed projects (WDF-CP)

To reduce vulnerability of watershed community to the impact of climate change on production, productivity and livelihood of the farmers, NABARD is implementing climate change adaptation initiatives in its watershed projects under WDF in 11 states (Bihar, Gujarat, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Jharkhand, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Odisha, Tamil Nadu, Telangana and Uttarakhand). These projects are planned and designed based on the climate change vulnerability assessment in various sectors of agri & allied activities by the watershed communities. Based on the vulnerability of the sectors and the community to climate change impact, the project interventions are identified by the watershed communities and implemented with financial support from NABARD under WDF. Core interventions under the initiative include additional soil and water conservation measures in the hot spot areas, soil fertility and productivity enhancement, promoting sustainable farming practices, risk mitigation and knowledge management, etc. As on 29 February 2024, 163 climate proofing projects have been sanctioned with financial commitment of Rs.100.58 crore of which Rs.88.88 crore has been released across 11 states.

iv. Springshed Development Programme in NE and hilly regions

Due to adverse impact of climate change in recent years, the springs, which are lifeline of the North Eastern Region (NER), are getting dried up affecting agriculture and livelihood of rural community. In order to revive and rejuvenate these springs and minimize the adverse impact of climate change on water availability both for human consumption and irrigation, especially during off-season, NABARD has launched an innovative and integrated springshed-based participatory watershed development programme in the NER, including Sikkim with financial support under WDF since January 2017. These projects are extended to 16 states (Arunachal Pradesh, Assam, Chhattisgarh, Himachal Pradesh, Jammu & Kashmir, Karnataka, Kerala, Maharashtra, Manipur, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Nagaland, Odisha, Sikkim, Tripura and Uttarakhand). As on 29 February 2024, 149 springshed development projects have been sanctioned with financial outlay of Rs.35.87 crore, against which Rs.21.69 crore has been disbursed.

v. Soil and water conservation promotional measures and other farming practices in the dryland/ watershed areas on non- watershed basis

WDF corpus used towards capacity building, awareness creation through campaign mode, etc., as part of developmental and promotional interventions under NRM sector along with implementation of location specific activities relating to soil and water conservation, technology transfer- demonstration of climate resilient and climate smart agriculture, promotion of organic farming, vermi-composting, apiculture, mushroom cultivation, sericulture, etc. in rural areas. The activities can be implemented on project /programme mode as well as non- project mode in the rainfed/dryland areas/ completed watershed projects under central/state/NABARD assisted programmes. As on 29 February 2024, 19 projects have been sanctioned with financial outlay of Rs.3.77 crore, against which Rs.2.02 crore has been disbursed.

vi. Pilot projects on reclamation of Alkaline soils through rain water management with watershed/landscape approach in Punjab & Haryana

Indiscriminate use of agri-inputs especially water and fertilizer, during Post- Green Revolution has resulted in severe land degradation leading to formation of alkaline soils in Punjab, Haryana and Western Uttar Pradesh. In order to demonstrate long-term sustainability of alkaline soil through participatory approach, pilot projects on reclamation of alkaline soil through rainwater management with watershed/ landscape approach are being implemented in Punjab and Haryanawith technical support from Central Soil Salinity Research Institute (CSSRI), Karnal. It covers an area of 2000 ha for reclamation of alkaline soils. Four pilot projects for Reclamation of Alkaline soils in Punjab and Haryana were grounded in the districts of Patiala and Sangrur in Punjab; and Kaithal and Karnal in Haryana. As on 29 February 2024, 4 pilot projects have been sanctioned with financial outlay of Rs.7.49 crore, against which Rs.6.47 crore has been disbursed.

vii. Soil Restoration and Rehabilitation of Degraded Soils for Food Security (Climate Proofing Soil Project) through KfW, Germany

NABARD, in collaboration with KfW, is implementing ‘Integration of Watershed Development for Rehabilitation of Degraded Soils and Climate Change Adaption’ project since 2017. The project was approved for support from the German Government (BMZ) under its initiative “One World- No Hunger” (SEWOH) for rehabilitation and regeneration of degraded soils, especially in areas with communities vulnerable to climate change. The project envisages strengthening the adaptive capacity of the communities in watersheds and enhancing their resilience to climate change through investments in conservation of natural resources, mainly soil.

The project is co-financed by KfW, NABARD and contribution of beneficiaries for investments at watershed level (in cash/in kind). The total grant provided by KfW under the project for three phases is € 19.5 million (Rs.143.75 crore). The grant extended by KfW is routed through NABARD to village watershed committees and implementing agencies for implementation on ground. The project is implemented in three phases covering 226 watersheds in 10 states, of which 123 projects under Phase I are completed. SEWOH I was implemented in Andhra Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Karnataka, Odisha & Telangana, SEWOH II was implemented in Kerala and Jharkhand and SEWOH III in Bihar, Maharashtra and Tamil Nadu. As on 29 February 2024, an amount of Rs.36.18 crore and Rs.22.11 crore has been utilized under Phase II and Phase III respectively.

viii. Web-based monitoring of watershed projects

NABARD had signed a MoU with National Remote Sensing Centre (NRSC), Hyderabad for the monitoring of watershed projects by leveraging geospatial technologies. Under this initiative, a web portal and mobile app have been developed for uploading the data by Project Facilitating Agencies (PFAs). The portal is facilitating NABARD in real time tracking of physical and financial progress and impact evaluation (change detection) of watershed projects (‘pre’ and ‘post’ stages) through analysis of satellite images, generation of MIS reports on real time basis and mapping as well as geo-tagging of assets created in the project areas through mobile app. As on 29 February 2024, a total of 1120 projects were digitised with 1,65,785 assets geotagged and 675 impact evaluation studies were conducted.

b. Tribal Development Fund (TDF) as on 29 February 2024

  • Total number of projects sanctioned: 985
  • No. of states and union territories covered under the programme: 29
  • Number of tribal families benefitted: 6.15 lakh
  • Total area covered: 5.77 lakh acre
  • Total financial assistance sanctioned from TDF: Rs 2745.39 crore
  • Total financial assistance disbursed: Rs 2000.96 crore

c. Promotion and Development of Farmer Producer Organizations

No. Description Count
1 No. of FPOs registered 5991
2 No. of total Shareholder Members 2439811
3 No. of FPOs credit Linked 1852
4 No. of FPOs market linked 3638
5 No. of POPIs 1356
6 No. of CBBOs 110
7 No. of RSA (Resource Support Agency) 29
8 No. of FPOs digitised 4498
9 No. of members digitised 1991687

Farmer Producers' Organisations supported by NABARD as on 29 February 2024

Rs in crore

Sr. No Name of the RO No. of FPOs Registered No of Members
1 Andaman and Nicobar 6 359
2 Andhra Pradesh 434 202320
3 Arunachal Pradesh 11 3067
4 Assam 153 38539
5 Bihar 281 114868
6 Chhattisgarh 84 35015
7 Goa 7 1132
8 Gujarat 284 117160
9 Haryana 104 46972
10 Himachal Pradesh 145 31954
11 Jammu and Kashmir 93 10840
12 Jharkhand 231 95850
13 Karnataka 395 212253
14 Kerala 177 76422
15 Madhya Pradesh 407 164028
16 Maharashtra 487 158190
17 Manipur 27 8054
18 Meghalaya 21 3907
19 Mizoram 28 6751
20 Nagaland 16 3575
21 New Delhi 1 160
22 Odisha 379 169691
23 Punjab 108 18919
24 Rajasthan 286 116654
25 Sikkim 17 2404
26 Tamil Nadu 462 266984
27 Telangana 388 158733
28 Tripura 3 460
29 Uttar Pradesh 438 150389
30 Uttarakhand 130 42014
31 West Bengal 388 182137
Total 5991 2439811

NABARD has developed a portal named ‘NABFPO.IN’ and digitised the FPO data including members’ profiles for use by the stakeholders.

Performance Grading Tool has been developed for the assessment and monitoring of overall performance and facilitating designing of need-based interventions and credit linkages for building robust organisation.

To increase the credit flow and to make the banks aware about the type of credit needs of FPOs, NABARD has developed guidance note on financing FPOs by Banks.

d. Farm Sector Promotion Fund (FSPF)

Since inception, FSPF involves various promotional initiatives such as innovative projects in agriculture and allied sectors, enhancing agriculture productivity and income of the farmers, creating market access, promotion of climate resilient agriculture in vulnerable / distressed districts, agricultural value chains, Farmers’ Clubs and their collectives including training and capacity building of farmers, etc. As on 29 February 2024, an amount of Rs.237.24 crore has been cumulatively disbursed under FSPF.

Since the inception of the fund, 1860 projects were sanctioned under DPR mode, and a grant assistance of Rs 115 crore has been disbursed towards implementation of these projects. Presently, 480 projects are ongoing across 31 States/UTs.

The projects were sanctioned for demonstration of innovative technologies in the areas of cultivation of vegetable, fruits and flowers, Integrated Farming System, horticulture technology, animal husbandry, agri-value chain development, IOT, ICT, AI & ML in agriculture, promotion of cultivation of millets & pseudo millets, application of drone technology in agriculture, hydroponics technology, etc.

Since the inception of Fund, 2735 exposure visits were supported so far to build the capacity of around 77325 farmers in collaboration with select Research Institutes like KVKs, SAUs, ICAR and ICRISAT, etc. for adopting new/ innovative methods of farming. The areas covered under the exposure visits were agri-extension services, dairy farming, integrated farming methods, organic farming, new agriculture technologies etc. As on 29 February 2024, an amount of Rs.21.60 crore has been disbursed under Capacity Building for Adoption of Technology (CAT).

Contact Information

Shri B. Uday Bhaskar
Chief General Manager
5th Floor, 'A' Wing C-24,
'G' Block Mumbai - 400051.
Bandra Kurla Complex, Bandra (East).
Mumbai - 400 051
Telephone: (+91) 022 - 26539569
E-mail Address: fsdd@nabard.org

Information under RTI – Section 4(1)(b)

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