1. Agriculture World

Kerala to Promote Homestead Farming & Farm Tourism to Attract Tourists

Shikha Parewa
Shikha Parewa
Farm Tourism

The Kerala government is trying to revive the devastated tourism sector due to corona pandemic. The Ministry of Tourism will introduce a number of new plans highlighting homestead farming and farm tourism. According to sources, the new plan will be implemented by connecting tourism with agricultural activities.

For this, Kerala is planning is to develop over 500 farm tourism units & 5,000 homestead farming places and connect them with the tourism activities across the state in 2 years, in a bid to boost the ‘village life experience’ programme of the tourism department.

The Responsible Tourism (RT) Mission has been given the task, wherein farming will be made part of village life activities in tourism programmes. Though 10 - 50 acres of land is required to begin farm tourism, homestead farming can be started from 30 cents of land.

K Roopesh Kumar, coordinator, State RT Mission said, “The concept of homestead farming includes cultivating mixed crops in minimum areas & exhibiting them for tourism purposes. There is no doubt there will be demand from visitors for fresh and organic products like vegetables, arrowroots, ginger, turmeric and so on. People can visit a farm unit or homestead farm anywhere in the state”.

In addition to the state-wide network, there would be one agriculture tourism hub in every district. Neendoor is being selected as the agriculture hub of Kottayam district.  Starting localised agriculture museums that display traditional agriculture equipment such as pathayam (storage cabin of rice), rice measuring vessels like para, change hi & naazhi and pots used for water draining.  Although the minimum land needed for farm tourism is ten acres, a group of farmers can together start a tourism programme similar to the group farming activities in agriculture sector.

Besides, promoting tourism, “farm tourism” helps in maintaining a balance of nature by giving importance to the natural resources. This will also make tourism projects economical so that people can begin projects without investing huge money.

The department has received a total of 168 applications to start farm tourism & homestead farming units in a few days after the state government made announcement regarding this. According to sources, government will accept applications till 20 August and training for stakeholders will begin by 30 August.

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