Making agriculture and sustainable aquaculture more environmentally friendly

Project description

Title: Capacity Enhancement for Sustainable Agriculture and Sustainable Aquaculture (C-SASA)
Commissioned by: German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ)​​​​​​​
Country: India​​​​​​​
Lead executing agency: National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD)​​​​​​​
Overall term: 2020 bis 2023



A total of 86 per cent of India's farmers are smallholders who need better access to credit, technologies and market linkages. This is crucial if the country is to achieve its goal of doubling agricultural exports by 2022. Over the past decade, growth in the agricultural sector has been almost stagnant. Due to the increase in cultivation costs, degrading lands and the impacts of climate change, farmers are facing ever greater challenges such as soil erosion, low organic content, intermittent rainfall, and frequent dry spells which lead to low productivity. This is compounded by hurdles in accessing credit, due to weak market linkages, inefficient business, and financial planning.


Technical cooperation with NABARD has enhanced the capacities of farmer institutions in the Indian states of Telangana and Odisha to use digital and environmentally friendly techniques in agriculture and aquaculture. This includes the use of Geographic Information Systems (GIS) and setting up effective Farmer Producer Organisation (FPO) ecosystems.



In recent years, the country's agricultural policies have focused on environmentally friendly agricultural practices and interventions that increase agricultural productivity, promote diversification, focus on the use of raw materials in agriculture while strengthening resilience to climate change.

The project aims to empower farmers by equipping them with the necessary skillset and creating a thriving ecosystem. In doing so, the project will support NABARD in mainstreaming various approaches, frameworks, and methodologies in carrying out their activities more efficiently. This will have a positive impact on millions of farmers. It will create the necessary support structures for other stakeholders such as Capacity Building Organisations, Famer Producer Organisations (FPOs) and project facilitating agencies, in further disseminating knowledge to improve farmers' capacities.

Technical cooperation with NABARD enables the implementation of a GIS-based planning approach and improves the relevant capabilities in farmers' institutions. The project incorporates elements such as agroecology, water security and business planning into farming practices to increase resilience, income, and agricultural productivity for farmers. Digital tools are being tested in pilot watersheds. Taking best practices from successful implementation, the pilot models will be mainstreamed at the national level within NABARD.

Last update: Juli 2022