Agricultural Technology, including the adoption/ promotion of critical inputs, and improved agronomic practices were being disseminated under 17 different schemes of the Department of Agriculture & Cooperation, Ministry of Agriculture during the 11th Plan period. The Modified Extension Reforms Scheme was introduced in 2010 with the objective of strengthening extension machinery and utilizing it for synergizing interventions under these schemes under the umbrella of the Agriculture Technology Management Agency (ATMA).
The National Mission on Agricultural Extension and Technology (NMAET) has been envisaged as the next step towards this objective through the amalgamation of these schemes.
Aims and objectives
The objective of the Scheme is to make the extension system farmer-driven and farmer-accountable by way of new institutional arrangements for technology dissemination. It aims to restructure and strengthen agricultural extension to enable delivery of appropriate technology and improved agronomic practices to farmers.
This is envisaged to be achieved by a judicious mix of extensive physical outreach and interactive methods of information dissemination, use of ICT, popularisation of modern and appropriate technologies, capacity building and institution strengthening to promote mechanisation, availability of quality seeds, plant protection etc. and encourage aggregation of Farmers into Interest Groups (FIGs) to form Farmer Producer Organisations (FPOs).
Sub Missions of NMAET
NMAET consists of 4 Sub Missions
- Sub Mission on Agricultural Extension (SMAE)
- Sub-Mission on Seed and Planting Material (SMSP)
- Sub Mission on Agricultural Mechanization (SMAM)
- Sub Mission on Plant Protection and Plant Quarantine (SMPP)
The common threads running across all 4 Sub-Missions in NMAET are Extension and Technology. Therefore, while 4 separate Sub-Missions are being proposed for administrative convenience, these are inextricably linked to each other at the field level and most components thereof have to be disseminated among farmers and other stakeholders through a strong extension network.