Department of Agriculture, Cooperation & Farmers Welfare
Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare
- National Mission for Sustainable Agriculture(NMSA) will be implemented during 12th Plan with the objectives to make agriculture more productive, sustainable and climate resilient; to conserve natural resources; to adopt comprehensive soil health management practices; to optimize utilization of water resources; etc.
- Soil Health Card Scheme is a scheme launched by Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare
- Launched on 19 February 2015.
- Under the scheme, the government plans to issue soil cards to farmers which will carry crop-wise recommendations of nutrients and fertilizers required for the individual farms to help farmers to improve productivity through judicious use of inputs.
- All soil samples are to be tested in various soil testing labs across the country.
- Thereafter the experts will analyze the strength and weaknesses (micro-nutrients deficiency) of the soil and suggest measures to deal with it. The result and suggestion will be displayed in the cards. The government plans to issue the cards to 14 crore farmers.
Details on the SHC
- SHC is a printed report that a farmer will be handed over for each of his holdings.
- It contains the status of his soil with respect to 12 parameters, namely N,P,K (Macro-nutrients) ; S (Secondary- nutrient) ; Zn, Fe, Cu, Mn, Bo (Micro – nutrients) ; and pH, EC, OC (Physical parameters).
- Based on this, the SHC also indicate fertilizer recommendations and soil amendment required for the farm.
- It provides two sets of fertilizer recommendations for six crops including recommendations of organic manures. Farmers can also get recommendations for additional crops on demand.
- The State Government will collect samples through the staff of their Department of Agriculture or through the staff of an outsourced agency.
- The State Government may also involve the students of local Agriculture / Science Colleges.
- It will be made available once in a cycle of 3 years, which will indicate the status of soil health of a farmer’s holding for that particular period.
- The SHC given in the next cycle of 3 years will be able to record the changes in the soil health for that subsequent period.
- Soil samples will be drawn in a grid of 2.5 ha in irrigated area and 10 ha in rain- fed area with the help of GPS tools and revenue maps.
Why needed such scheme?
- Soil testing is developed to promote soil test based on nutrient management.
- Soil testing reduces cultivation cost by application of right quantity of fertilizer.
- It ensures additional income to farmers by increase in yields and it also promotes sustainable farming.