Smallholder farmers have very limited knowledge on crop diseases, pest problems, and its treatment. These farmers either rely heavily on products offered by retailers or do not apply any treatment at all. In most instances, it results in up to 30% loss in overall crop yield. The limited information they get on disease infestation on crops and its treatment is provided by agro-vets and plant protection officers (PPOs). An initial research conducted by Samarth revealed that the technical knowledge of plant protection officers (PPOs) and agro-vets regarding crop protection inputs (CPIs) are not up-to-date.
To deal with this market constraint, Samarth developed a seven-day training course in coordination with Plant Protection Directorate (PPD) to train PPOs who are stationed in DADO offices all across Nepal. The aim is to ultimately transfer the necessary skills and knowledge on CPI management and application to agro-vets through the PPOs in their respective districts so that the agro-vets can provide proper knowledge to the farmers on the availability and judicious use of CPIs throughout Nepal.