Bari Manufacturing: A gainful employment for women
Bari manufacturing is also a traditional household industry in Deoghar. With entrepreneurial interest supported by Government departments there has been a sea change in bari manufacturing and lot of women find employment in this sector.
A group of 15 women led by Savitri Devi started this bari manufacturing in 2006-07. They used do it manually with drying under sun. The volume of production was less and that is one of the reasons for less profit. There is a high demand for Deoghar bari. Savitri encouraged few more SHGs to start making bari. However, their total production was not satisfying the ever increasing demand of city dwellers. Besides they felt that drying, packaging, labeling of their products has to improve in order get better price. The dichotomy of this activity is that demand is high during the Srawan month (rainy season), however it is difficult but it get delayed in drying during this season.
The groups approached KVK, Deoghar and received training in hygienic ways of making bari. The KVK with the support of MESP created a Common Facility Centre (CFC) and installed the machines in the CFC so that all the producers can use the facility. Grinding and Drying machine were installed in the first phase. Subsequently machines like packaging and other machines were installed. Mechanized production helped them increase the productivity and in turn their income.
Savitri mobilized many more women to form SHGs and avail the facility at the CFC. She than formed a producers cooperative with women SHGs as members. The Cooperative took up the responsibility to provide raw materials to members and also sell the produces under single brand. Since then no looking back for Savitri and other women. A silent revolution in bari making has taken shape and hundreds of women are gainfully employed in this enterprise.
(Source: ICAR-Zonal Project Directorate, Zone II, Kolkata)