Source: thehindu.com

The Kerala Veterinary and Animal Sciences University (KVASU) is all set to launch a start-up village project in Kolelands in the State.

The initial phase of the project in agriculture and allied sectors will be launched at Pullazhi in the district. The Directorate of Entrepreneurship of KVASU in association with the Thrissur Urban Development Authority and the Pullazhi Koleland Cooperative Society will implement the project.

“Many are under the impression that start-ups are possible only in the IT sector. But there is immense potential for agriculture and allied sector start-ups in the State. Kolelands are suitable for implementing agriculture start-ups. Agriculture, livestock, and fisheries sectors can easily be integrated in this ecosystem,” said K. Radhakrishnan, former Mayor and Chairman Thrissur Urban Development Corporation.

The project aims at establishing a start-up village in livestock production as a pilot project along with developing sustainable development models in farming.

“The project will pursue the market potential of agriculture, livestock, and fisheries products and will market them as separate brands through the Pullazhi cooperative society and KVASU sales outlets. Thrust will be given to organic farm and allied products,” said T.P. Sethumadhavan, Director of Entrepreneurship, KVASU.

“At a time when the State is in the process of shifting to totally organic agriculture by 2016, this assumes more significance. Consumers are more aware of harmful effects of pesticides, antibiotics, and heavy metals. So, a move to market organic or pesticide-free products at a premium price will facilitate farmers to get better profit margins,” Mr. Sethumadhavan said.

KVASU will supply fodder slips and mineral mixtures to improve productivity in the dairy sector. A veterinary health-cum-infertility camp will be organised for dairy farmers, said KVASU Vice Chancellor B. Ashok.

“In order to control mastitis, disease-control kits will be provided to dairy farmers. Measures will be taken to produce and market organic eggs, broiler chicken, vegetables, fish, organic rice, inputs for organic farming like dried garden manure, vegetable manure and biodynamic mixture. It will be marketed under separate brands. Steps will also be taken to assure appropriate institutional linkage for technical and marketing support,” Dr. Ashok said. In order to overcome the shortage of milkers, KVASU is planning to implement the Milkobike project.

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