In the course of 3 years, RNBA and Partners have successfully installed small scale processing unit in 4 villages namely, Taudaijang and KabuiKhullen in RNBA Target villages, Ithai Kumbi in PHDO and Meipou in CWG.
The installation of processing unit is a blessing for the farmers. Hiring of machine from private owners and travelling to the nearest town area where machines are available was an expensive expenditure occurred before the installation of processing unit. Now that machines are available they are able to generate extra amount of income from their farm produces through value addition which includes sorting, grading and packaging. The products were then sold at higher price in the open local market and Imphal.
The processing unit installed by PHDO in Bishnupur District were able to generate a gross income from the sale of the products with a sum of Rs. 1,20,685 and a net profit of Rs. 77, 310 from July 2018- 31st August 2019. The main items processed by Ima Phouoibi Women’s Multipurpose Co-Operative Society Ltd comprising of 29 SHGs members are Ginger, Black Rice and King Chilli. The farmers are now farming for the sufficient availability of raw materials for the value added production.
CWG installed Sugarcane Extractor Machine in Meipou Village, Chandel. The processing unit is be taken care of by Meipou VLF. In the first year of the installation 4 farmers utilized the unit to the fullest. The gross profit made by 4 farmers is Rs. 3,42,000 and a net profit of Rs. 2,68,000 from the sale of 8,500 liters (Rs.40/Liter) of sugarcane juice. The Meipou VLF also benefited by charging utilization fee of the processing unit, and was able to earn an income of Rs. 11,340 wherein the processing fee per 15 liters is Rs. 20.
Having seen the successful harvest of the four farmers, Muidai SHG consisting of 15 members was motivated and did sugarcane plantation in an area of 2 acres. The harvest had been done in the month of March-April 2019 and yielded approximately 9500 litres of sugarcane juice. The profit from the sale of the sugarcane juice comes to Rs. 3,80,000. Individual farmers are also farming in their private owned farm and getting an average profit of Rs. 20,000 from the sale of sugarcane juice.
The farmers and the SHG are continuing with the plantation and are expecting more income in the coming year 2020.
Small processing unit was installed in Kabuikhullen village with the request from the farmers and knowing the fact that it will immensely help the villagers and also food processing unit in Taudaijang Tamenglong which was installed in the 3rd sixth month has benefitted the communities greatly. Physical labour has tremendously reduced as they no longer need to worry about transport and communication; it has reduced bulkiness, extended shelf life and the farmers now have accessed opportunities in adding value to their agricultural products. For instance, sliced and dried turmeric which use to cost Rs.75 per kilo are now sold at Rs.150 per kilo after value addition. Prior to the current APPI project, farmers sell fresh turmeric at minimum rate of Rs.20 per kilo but tables have turned now that turmeric is processed and value has added. Farmers are able to earn Rs. 8000 instead of Rs. 3000 from 40 kilos of turmeric. Conventional and unhygienic practised of mothers chewing rice for their babies are also slowly declining as rice and dal are grinded to feed infants. They also sliced and grind dried tapioca to make bread. The challenge facing the farmers is the irregularity of the electricity which led them to inconsistent functioning of the facility.
Secondly, the District Administration of Noney District, Manipur captured the potential of technology intervention for food processing piloted by RNBA in Noney and Tamenglong District and on that ground, the District Administration after consulting with RNBA, concept note on Development of Integrated Horticulture & Agriculture intervention with sustainable model under Hill Area Development Program for Noney District was prepared. The proposal prepared by RNBA with District Adminstration was approved by the Central and State Govt. RNBA will be the implementing agency for this project. It targets 71 villages of Noney District, where women SHGs will be the key target group at the village level. The model includes setting up of Primary processing at village level, feed plant at Noney district headquarter area, tea plantation, processing and packaging and develop incubation centre.