CGIAR Gender News

ICRISAT Empowers Innovative Farmer to Establish Groundnut Crop Cafeteria in Odisha, India


Ms Rajeswari Majhi, 29, has allotted one hectare of her land for planting a seed varietal cafeteria after receiving training at ICRISAT. She and a co-trainee plan to identify the best varieties for the area and increase production on a larger patch in the next season.

Rajeswari a groundnut farmer from the Raygada district of Odisha, is the sole earner for her family. ​ Determined to overcome the challenges posed by traditional methods of production and access to seeds, Rajeshwari has been seeking ways to make farming climate-resilient and profitable.

Despite discontinuing school, she is quick to adopt innovations that drive the entrepreneur in her. She joined a local self-help group and is alert to avenues that can enhance her income.

Through the self-help group, she was introduced to scientists from the International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics (ICRISAT,) who are closely working with Odisha Livelihood Mission (OLM) towards improving seed security in the community through a sustainable seed business model. ​

At an ICRISAT training session, Rajeswari gained knowledge of good seeds, treating seeds for disease control, land preparation, and other techniques, and executed the learnings effectively in her own field. ​