Organic Harvests and Sustainable Practices
to Generate Income All Year Long


Hill agriculture does not provide food security for the entire year. Lack of viable income too often forces farming families to migrate to urban centres. Low-yield agriculture and the frequent destruction caused by wild animals increases this migration. In order to reverse urban migration, Avani has initiated a program of income generation through land-based activities.

Avani is working with the cultivation and harvesting of dye yielding plants as a livelihood option. Members of Self Help Groups are now cultivating turmeric where the surplus crop is sold to make natural dyes. Local invasive species such as eupatorium and flowering plants like marigold are also collected and sold. Growth of dye yielding plants is less labour- and time-intensive and not affected by wildlife, leaving the farmers with time and energy to invest in other activities to augment their incomes.

Avani’s own vegetable garden serves as a demonstration of organic farming using recycled water for irrigation. Experiments of multi-tier farming with tea, sericulture trees and dye-yielding plants are also underway at the campus. These techniques, once perfected, can be taught to villagers to improve income generation and the sustainability of their farming practices.

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