Sustainable Agricultural Mechanization

Project helps promote finger millet (kurakkan) cultivation in Sri Lanka


Finger millet (kurakkan) is an important food crop grown in the rain-fed uplands (dry zone) of Sri Lanka. It can be cultivated under adverse soil and climatic conditions. In particulat, the crop is important crop in tropical regions of the country because of its resistance to pests and diseases, short growing season, and productivity. Especially under hardy and drought conditions when major cereals cannot be relied upon to provide sustainable yields.

Finger millet cultivation (Chena) in Sri Lanka has decreased due to forest clearance regulations in the country. To target this challenge, the project helped incorporate finger millet crop cultivation to the upland climate smart agriculture crop protocol.

Traditional manual finger millet threshing and de-husking process is costly, labor consuming and resulting higher labor cost and low-quality final products.  The project assisted the Department of Agriculture in this endeavor and provided a high-capacity threshing machine with the capacity of 400kg/hr and necessary on-farm training on the operation of the machine. This machine was also able to attract the special attention of the women farmers who were engaged in the hard, tiring threshing process.

This was all made possible through the collaboration between the government of Sri Lanka and FAO projects supported by Germany. 


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