Farm machinery hiring services launched at Paro
Hiring service was officially launched at Paro Dopshari geog on 19th, October, 2013. The hiring services aims to achieve land intensification, utilization of fallowed land, income generation through crop intensification and commercialization of agriculture.
Range of machineries available through hiring services includes land preparation, paddy transplantation, harvesting, among others. Till now, mechanization services relied purely through the hiring services provided by the private owners, which is expensive as well as inefficient in terms of area coverage.
The inauguration ceremony was attended by Ex-Dasho Zimpon and the Programme Directors of NSC and AMC along with geog leaders, farmers and officials from the Dzongkhag Administrative.
Farm machinery hiring services launched
6 May, Kabisa: The Department of Agriculture (DoA), Ministry of Agriculture and Forests, formally launched the farm machinery hiring services starting from Serigang village, Kabisa geog under Punakha Dzongkhag. Hiring service will be managed by the Agriculture Machinery Centre (AMC) through the Regional AMC offices.
Hiring services is instituted mainly to address a long standing issue of labour shortage, agriculture feminisation and ageing rural population. Hiring services also aims to achieve land intensification, utilisation of fallowed land, income generation through crop intensification and commercialisation of agriculture.
Range of machineries available through hiring services includes land preparation, paddy transplantation, harvesting, among others. Till now, mechanisation services relied purely through the hiring services provided by the private owners, which is expensive as well as inefficient in terms of area coverage.
For the current cropping season, approximately 5000 acres of land will be brought under partial mechanisation. For Punakha and Wangdue valley, 1500 acres of land will be brought under mechanisation. Most of the farm machinery used for the hiring services is from the 2 KR Japanese Grant and Non Project Grant Aid from Japan.
During the handing and taking, the ceremony was attended by the DoA Director General, Mr. Tenzin Dhendup along with geog leaders, farmers and officials from the Dzongkhag Administrative, Punakha and Ministry
Refresher course on traffic rules and regulations at AMTC
A refresher course of traffic rules and regulations for road safety acts was given to the undergoing trainees of tractor and power tiller from different regions under RNR-RDC and machines owner on 29th April 2013. The personnel from Road Safety & Transport Authority and the traffic police from Paro were the guest lecturers. About 30 participants were attended the course including instructors from training centre. The Agriculture Machinery Training Centre issues a certificate to all the trainees who are then eligible to get the license from the RSTA. This refresher course on the road safety is important because the farm machinery like power tillers have to ply on the road and the operator has to follow the rules of RSTA. A month long training for power tiller was completed on 30th April 2013 and for tractor the three months training will be completed by 30th May 2013. During the training the operators are trained at the centre in driving sequence, field training and high way road training. The basic repair and maintenance of the machines are also given as to enhance their capacity building and skill as operators as well as for basic repair and maintenance.
AMTC with Grade B in training registration
With the mandate to make aware and promote labor saving technology, Agriculture Machinery Training Centre under AMC was established in the year 1986, under then the Department of Agriculture. Major external assistance was received from the Government of Japan, primarily as General and KR-II Grants. It was envisaged that AMC would be responsible for the whole operation, maintenance and co-operation of the Farm Mechanization training and to achieve the activities, such training are provided to enhance the operation and maintenance skill of the machines owners as well as the private stake holders.
It was necessary to regulate the quality of training programmes in the country through registration of the training providers. Thus, the Agriculture Machinery Training Centre registered itself with the Department of Occupation Standards, Ministry of Labour and Human Resource since than 2010 December and has received Grade B. The centre provides training to machines owners (farmers), extension workers and operators in group, students and school drop outs and private mechanics. Aside from this we also train key farmers, in-country manufacturer, CNR students and rural agriculture mechanic within the country. The Centre is now equipped with the teaching materials, training ground, library and class room facilities. The facilities for games and sports are also provided. The classrooms, conference halls with audio-visual aids, recreational facilities together with trainee and executive hostels and guest rooms are provided. Hostel with single bed accommodating 40 trainees are provided. There is a common kitchen and s dining hall with the cooking utilities which are provided in groups
Hiring guidelines and the hiring rates have been approved
Consultative Meeting on Farm Machinery Service Centre (FMSC) and Hiring Strategy by Agriculture Machinery Centre
Agriculture Machinery Centre had completed the strategy documents on FMSC establishment and hiring strategy which will be implemented in the 11th FYP and will indeed be two prominent activities among the many activities in the upcoming plan.
Certificate awarding to VTI Students
Certificates were awarded to 8 Vocational Training Institute trainees from Khuruthang, Punakha who were attached in Agriculture Machinery Development Centre under Agriculture Machinery centre from January 1st till March 29, 2013. They were thoroughly involved in fabricating of 36 numbers of Bhutanese powered paddy thresher cum winnower which will be used in threshing Paddy. The project was budgeted under DRDP ( 21 sets) and ABSD ( 15 sets) programme.
The students along with new and young staff of AMDC gained valuable experience in mass production. Equipments, dies and jigs were used and made to ease the mass production.
The students expressed their appreciation and the experience that they take from these three months of works. The joy and satisfaction of blue colour work and fabrication a Bhutanese thresher have taken precedence over hardships and cold winter.
Handing and taking of power tillers and spare parts received under KR-II grant 2010
The handing and taking over of 165 numbers of power tillers and spare parts received under KR-II grant 2010 was handed over by Chief guest, Ms Yumiko Asakuma, the chief representative, JICA, Bhutan office and received from the Bhutanese side by Dr Pema Gamtsho, Minister for Agriculture and Forest yesterday at AMC, Paro. After the signing and handing over ceremony, the guests visited AMC technical sections and were showcased and demonstrated with farm machinery and equipments available. After the lunch, site visit to the local fabricator who was awarded the trailer fabrication was also made. The guests included Paro Dzongda, JICs representatives, offtg Director General, DoA, AFD and Planning chiefs and other representatives from the DoA, Thimphu, sector heads from Paro.
The programme was a success and the chief guest had also mentioned that its is one of the important grants which had immensely benefited the farmers and hence proposal should be submitted every year.
Honble Lyonpo also mentioned in his speech the changes that have been brought with the use of this machines received under the grant.
Paddy transplanting demonstration was done to the farmers of Rinchen Gang, Thedtsho geog under Wangdue Dzongkhag. This year we in collaboration with RNRDC, Bajo and Dzongkhag Agriculture Sector has started to carry out the winter cropping in the geog to cultivate as paddy double cropping with mechanized cultivation covering 3 acrages in Rinchengang area on 17th March 2013. The Main objective of the programme is to convince the farmers on utilization and advantages of transplanter machine as labour saving technology.
Farm machinery hiring services from 11th Plan
The agriculture and forests ministry will introduce a nationwide hiring services for farm machinery in the next five year plan to increase farm mechanisation in country
Committee meeting concerning the Food Security Project for the underprivileged farmers (KR –II 2010)
The committee meeting for the Food Security Project (KR-II 2010) for underprivileged farmers for was held today at 10AM at the conference hall of the Ministry of Agriculture and Forest between the Government of Japan and the Royal Government of Bhutan.
The Meeting was chaired by Hon’ble Secretary, Dasho Sherub Gyeltshen, Ministry of Agriculture and Forests and was attended by Mr. Hideki Taniguchi, Second Secretary, Embassy of Japan in India, and officials from JICA office, Bhutan, officials from JICS, Tokyo, Japan, officials from Ministry of Finance, Gross National Happiness Commission and Ministry of Agriculture and Forests.
From KR-II 1984 till KR-II 2010 a sum Nu. 1,671M has been received under the grant with the total of 2,478 units of Power tillers and other machineries from the government of Japan. The Power tillers commonly known as “KUBOTA” is versatile machine which are used for land preparation, water pumping, threshing, milling and transporting farm products benefiting the farming communities. According to the Director General, DoA, the use of Powers tillers has shown an increase of 5% yield and 24% of cost of production is reduced. With the limited number of power tiller received under the grant against the huge demand, an appropriate distribution guidelines and criteria for allotment has been already approved focusing on the 11th Five Year Plan priorities.
Of the total 165units, 25 units will be used for farm machinery Hiring system and 3 units will be used educational purpose under AMC while the rest will be distributed to individual /group farmers. Other accessories required for the power tiller has been fabricated within the country by private manufacturer (Wangchuk Steel Fabrication) based in Paro.
According to the Chairman, Dasho Sherub Gyeltsen, the present price of Nu. 202,215.09 have been approved and the distribution will be started by April 2013.
Mr. Karma Thinley, Programme Director, Agriculture Machinery Centre presented the output of the various activities carried under the utilization plan funded by KR –II Counter Part Fund. The balance fund of Nu. 89M has been planned to be utilized for improving farm mechanizations services focusing more on Farm Machinery Hiring and Farm Machinery Service centre establishment in potential agriculture production areas with the 11th Plan.
According to the Mr. Hideki Taniguchi, Second secretary, Embassy of Japan, India, the implementation of the KR –II projects is commendable and very satisfied and look forward for the same spirit of implementation.
Testing of prototype machines
The Inspection and Quality Control Centre under AMC conducted preliminary test of prototype machines in the field. The main objectives were to confirm the adaptability and suitability in Bhutanese soil condition. Following are some of the machines tested:
The centre has tested the machine through making holes to plant apple fruit trees. It took 25 minutes to complete planting one apple tree and in total 100 plus holes were made. The machine takes more time on hard soil. The preliminary test is completed and still further test will be conducted.
The manual operated vegetable seeder was tested in field with three types of seed (mustard, pea and wheat) using appropriate belt which controls distance of sapling uniformly. It was tested for half day and it is functioning well for seeding vegetable seeds.
Training on operation and maintenance of tractor
Training on operation and maintenance of tractor is started from today at RAMC Samtenling for the selected 11 key farmers from Sarpang and Dagana dzongkhag.The program is under the ABSD initiative. The selected farmers were from the potential areas of farm mechanization.They will be engaged for the operation of tractors in near future for the mechanization under the various progammes such as Vegetable cultivation, paddy mechanisation, dryland mechanization and hiring system.
Fruit Plantation Programme in AMC
From the morning of March 2, 2013 till evening, AMC staff, VTI trainees and farmer trainees planted 50 numbers of fruit saplings which included apple, peach, apricot and other varieties in Agriculture Machinery Training Centre. The holes were dug using the earth auger and footpaths along the plantation lines were also made. Refreshments and lunch were also served through contribution. The day was tiring but was all the worth as different kinds of fruit trees were planted in the campus. The day was joined by programme Director, section in-charges and majority of the staff even though it was a holiday.
Small Intervention big Impact Technology (Twain ropeway)
Agriculture Machinery Development Centre under Agriculture Machinery Centre had installed an improved twain in Isuna Gewog under Paro Dzongkhag last year. The trolley to carry people and the mechanical transportation mechanism was also designed and fabricated in AMDC. The user farmer informed that she was finding tedious to rotate the pulley lately and requested AMC’s intervention again. Hence a team along with VTI trainess went to observe on March 1, 2013. The trainees were taken to let them observe this new technology. It was learnt that the user farmers were applying excess grease on the pulleys and cable thinking that it will smoothen the rotation. However it has be felt that it instead increasing friction as the area was very windy and dusty and the viscosity of the grease is very low thus requiring more energy. The farmer was informed to collect some drip cans from hospital so that instead of grease, engine oil can be applied which is reduce friction and allowing smooth and free rotation. Users were informed to clean the grease and together with AMC, oil will be applied as soon as possible after the cans are made ready by the farmers.
Water powered mill rectification in Bumthang
Agriculture Machinery Development Centre under Agriculture Machinery Centre had developed tested and installed three numbers of improved water powered mills in Bumthang recently. However the water mill in Galing village needed rectification. The problem occurred as the water from the pipe was full as the grinding stones were very big and heavy in this locality than others. The discs which were attached to the turbine shaft with dulldog bolts could not withstand the pressure and there was tear in the holes and also the disc got twisted as the bolt could not stop the attachment. Hence a team on informing immediately discussed the rectification in AMDC, Paro and opted to weld a Mild steel angle after maintain the disc and tilt angle. This was to avoid the twisting of the disc. Hence the rectification is completed now.
Diverse participants from different dzongkhags including the 6 extension officers, 6 key farmers and 17 technical staffs of AMC were awarded the training certificate in conclusion of the four days training of repair and maintenance of power tiller by Kubota Service Engineer at the Agriculture Machinery Training Centre in AMC. The training was funded by the 2 KR Grant and RGoB. The training was a tri-partied training organized by the Kubota Service Group, Sumitomo and the Singye group of company. The farm attendants from the Regional Development Centre, Bajo were also awarded the training certificate on completion of one month training of repair and maintenance of power tiller.
Training to AMC staffs
Four days refresher training on operation, repair and maintenance of two wheel tractors/power tillers started on 26th, February, 2013 at the Agriculture Machinery Training Centre in collaboration with the Kubota Service Engineer and Sumitomo, a Japanese supplier. This is first of its kind where the engineer from the Kubota Service Engineer is conducting training in operation, repair and maintenance of the power tiller. The objective of the refresher training by the Kubota Service in AMC is to enhance the skills of the mechanics of AMC, focal extension officers and the key farmers based on the FMSC and ABSD areas. 30 participants are attending the refresher training and the training will end on the 1st of March, 2013.
17 farmers from Norgaygang gewog under Sibsoo, Samtse Dzongkhag visited AMC on 26th, February, 2013. The activities of AMC were explained to the farmers and they were taken on the visit to the different sections showing them the different activities and demonstrating different farm machinery.