The Power of a Grain of Rice 1

The Power of a Grain of Rice

From the Saura ethnic community, the Patika family, like other Indian farmers, faced many challenges to their rice production. Eager to adopt new methods of rice planting and cultivation, the family spontaneously adopted the new agriculture method in the hopes of increasing yields with less effort.

Trinath heard about the “System of Rice Intensification” (SRI) training, from one of his neighbours, and was keen to apply the practice as it sounded beneficial. With training to teach improved ways to plant rice with less seed, water, or labour, while increasing yields by 50-80%, Trinath and his family couldn’t say no!  Eager to start, the family received rice seed and SRI training just in time for planting season.

The Power of a Grain of Rice 2

When asked about how they came to practice this new method of rice farming with precision planting Trinath explains; “other local trainees came and motivated us, but we were all skeptical at first. Then when it came to the planting of single small seedlings- and putting them 1 foot apart- I got really scared, as it looked so thin and I thought we’ll get a poor yield! Well, we took the risk and left it, because others convinced us it will work, and now I am very happy. This year the monsoon was very erratic but we are some of the lucky ones, as our group of rice farmers can hire a pump to irrigate with water when we need. 

If you look at the ‘traditional’ rice crops, they are shorter, and will definitely yield less than ours. In August, we had Cyclone Titli hit the area and caused much damage, but our fields were sheltered and the SRI plants are stronger, so damage to our rice was minimal. I am convinced that we’ll get 60-70% more yield than our neighbours who did the conventional farming. A bag of rice here is 60 kg, and we estimate we’ll get at least 30 bags (1,800 kg) from this area of almost an acre …so we now have food security all year. Thanks for helping us!”

Through the SRI program, farming families like the Patika’s are able to reap more rice than ever before! We praise God for the ways He is providing for His children – and we love seeing it happen!