Retaining youth in Agriculture and making agriculture more profitable are big challenges now a day. Also, there is a continuous increase in the migration of rural youth to urban areas. On the other hand, small land holding poles challenge to food security for increasing population. Thus, realizing the importance of the rural youth in agricultural development and in a bid to create interest and confidence among rural youth in agriculture through various skill development training and encourage them to pursue farming as profession, generate additional employment opportunities to absorb under employed and unemployed rural youth in secondary agriculture and service related activities in rural areas, Indian Council of Agricultural Research initiated a programme “Attracting and Retaining Youth in Agriculture” through 25 identified KVKs of this country. In each district, 200-300 rural youths is identified for their skill development in entrepreneurial activities and establishment of related micro-enterprise units in the area of Apiary, Mushroom, Seed Processing, Soil testing, Poultry, Dairy, Goatry, Carp-hatchery, Vermi-compost etc.
Present ARYA centres under ICAR-ATARI Kolkata areKVK South 24 Paraganas (Nimpith), Uttar Dinajpur, Hooghly, Purulia of West Bengal and KVK Nayagarh, Cuttack, Puri, Sambalpur, Ganjam-I of Odisha.
- To attract and empower the rural youth to take up various agriculture allied and service sector enterprises.
- To demonstrate sustainable, attractive, remunerative and climate smart agri-based job opportunities for rural youth at village level and create gainful employment.
- To upgrade youth-capacity in specific agri-preneurship model adoption.
- To establish network groups to take up resource and capital intensive activities like processing, value addition and marketing.
- To backstop technology dissemination chain and its up-scaling.
- To demonstrate functional linkage with different institutions and stakeholders.
- To curb rural migration.
Identified enterprises under ARYA
1) KVK Nimpith initiated three hub-based interventions i.e.
- Livestock based intervention- Vanaraja farming, Pekin duck farming, Meat processing unit
- Fishery based intervention – Carp hatchery, Asian Catfish hatchery
- Horticulture based intervention – Climate resilient shade net betel vine cultivation, Horticultural nursery
2) KVK Nayagarh established three enterprises under ARYA project-
- Mushroom production
- Stunted fingerlings production
- Backyard poultry farming
Salient achievements of the project: