HUSBAND AND WIFE DUO SUCCESSFUL VENTURE AS FRIENDS OF COCONUT - Sri Vinod Thomas and Kripa Vinod
Recent hike in coconut price is an impetus for coconut farmers to go for better management in coconut palms, but they find it difficult to get sufficient labours for coconut plucking and its management. The traditional coconut climbers are vanishing lot due to social upliftment, their community received .In order to fill this void, CARD-Krishi Vigyan Kendra with the sponsorship of Coconut Development Board conducted 13 batches of ‘friends of coconut tree ’ training for 267 participant’s successfully. After attending the training all the trainees are engaged in coconut climbing either full time or part time. The trainings were residential scheduled for 6 days in such a way that topics like mechanized coconut climbing, scientific coconut management and hands on training on different cultural practices in coconut ,pest and disease management were covered. Beside this HRD topics like Yoga, time management, development of communication skills, etc. were also included . Trainees who attended the training were given free lodging and boarding besides an insurance coverage of one lakh for one year, which can be renewed.
Sri Vinod Thomas and Kripa Vinod were unemployed couples residing at Thengamom, near Adoor attended the Friends of Coconut training programme at KVK.Soon after they completed the training programme successfully, they started coconut plucking as their career, and the duo goes to work in their two wheeler along with the two coconut climbing machines received during their training programme. When Vinod climbs the palms, simultaneously Kripa attach the machine to another palm for Vinod to climb. This saves both time and effort for climbing. As Vinod not only do coconut harvesting but also cleans the crown of the coconut palms, farmers engaging them are more satisfied and regularly calls the couple. They also provide recommendation on Pest and disease management and fertilizer aspects for palms. As more farmers are approaching the couple they have engaged four friends of coconut trained technicians along with them.
Apart from this the couple is also looking after Bedfort Estate, near Aryankavu, at Kerala-Tamilnadu border. There are 750 coconut palms and 200seedlings in the estate besides 10ha rubber. There is almost round the year harvest and plant protection work in the estate for which they are employing other technicians also. In the estate the couple is earning around Rs1200 per day while outside work they are getting around Rs700 per day.
Vinod Thomas, Thotugara Puthenvedu, Thegamom P O., Adoor Phone No:9961327157