The Farmer FIRST Programme (FFP) is an ICAR Initiative to move beyond the production and productivity, to privilege the small holder agriculture and complex, diverse and risk prone realities of majority of the farmers through enhancing farmer scientists interface. There are concepts and domain that are new in emphasis like resource management , climate resilient agriculture, production management including storage, market, supply chains, innovation systems etc. The farmer FIRST as a concept of ICAR is developed as farmer in a centric role for research problem identification, prioritization and conduct of experiments and its management in farmers’ conditions. The focus is on farmer’s Farm, Innovations, Resources, Science and technology (FIRST). Two terms “enriching the knowledge” and “ integrating technology” qualify the meaning of farmer FIRST in Indian context. Enriching knowledge signifies the need for the research system as well as farmers to learn from each other in context to existing farm environment ,perception of each other and interaction of the subsystems established around. Technology integration is looked from the prospective that the scientific outputs coming out from the research institutions , many times do not fit as such in the farmers’ conditions and thus , certain alterations and adaptations are required at field level for their acceptance, adoption and success.
At ICAR CIRC, the Farmer FIRST Programme was initiated from Oct.2016 and is continued till date under the title “Livelihood Improvement through Sustainable Dairy Farming using Suitable Interventions in three villages of Sardhana block of Meerut district namely Jhitkari, Chhabadiya and Chandana villages reaching 863 households covering majority of small and marginal farmers with the objective of productivity enhancement of dairy based integrated farming system, scientific dairy herd management, technology demonstration like AI, estrus synchronization, ETT, clean milk production, mastitis prevention and control, milk processing and marketing, vermin-composting and livestock waste management ,honey bee keeping as diversified agriculture along with integrated farming with the following objectives
1. Assessment of productivity of cattle and buffaloes and its impact under dairy based Integrated farming system.
2. Scientific dairy farming and herd management interventions for technology demonstration , application and human resource development.
3. Clean milk production, processing, post harvest technology and market linkages in dairy enterprise
4. Livestock waste management and vermi-composting