COVID restrictions has plunged millions of smallholder farmers into financial crisis – most have lost a whole season’s income, and as they try to prepare for the next harvest, they are finding that the prices of seeds, fertilizers, and pesticides have skyrocketed.
As an NGO committed to creating an eco-friendly, sustainable economic recovery for Tamil Nadu farmers, VOICE Trust has been supplying distributing non-GMO seeds that can be banked for future seasons, along with natural pest repellents that are non-toxic for both farmers and customers, and nutrient-rich manures that produce abundant crops.
Women have been especially hard hit by the coronavirus crisis. Many who grow their own produce traditionally sold it from a blanket spread by a hot dusty road, where the heat is so intense they couldn’t start till 4 in the afternoon, even though they had to quit at twilight.
Now, with street traffic drastically reduced due to COVID restrictions , even that meager living has been denied them.
We are conducting workshops to train women farmers to turn their crops into value-added products like Thakkali thokku and Vanjaram Meen pickles and tomato juice and jam. Because these products last longer, can be placed in shops, and can be sold for more than the raw produce, they can significantly increase a farmer’s income.