Faculty of Agricultural Technology, UGM, and the Central Board of Serayu-Opak Rivers Region harvested SRI (System Rice Intensification) rice experimental plot in Jering hamlet, Sidorejo village, Godean sub-district of Sleman regency, Wednesday (11/11). At least 200 farmers from four regencies in the province of Yogyakarta Special Region were invited to watch the harvest. The farmers have previously participated in an SRI championship.
One of the advisors of SRI rice cultivation from the Faculty, Prof Dr. Ir. Sigit Supadmo Arif, M.Eng., said that this harvest is an effort to spread SRI rice system to farmers. He also mentioned that about a thousand farmers in the province have planted SRI Rice. Sigit Supadmo said that it is not easy to introduce the planting system to farmers as they are accustomed to the conventional system in which they get fertilizers, seed, and planting system instantly. This new system can actually increase production up to 3-5 tons per hectare and is more water-efficient. In average, a hectare of land can produce a minimum of 9-12 tons.
Compared with the conventional system, the concept of this system uses less water, wider and shallow spacing of planting, and young seeds with one seed per hole. â€œPerhaps they are not confident yet. Moreover, the women who plant are not accustomed to carrying the fertilizers and making own organic fertilizers. They are accustomed to instant stuff,â€ he said.
In addition, Supadmo said that the Faculty also developed local rice seed variety in Godean and Kulon Progo. Minwaluyo, 46, from Gemah Ripah Lestari Farmer community in Sleman who was invited to that event said that she and 30 members of her farmer community would pioneer the use of the SRI Rice. â€œWe have plans to make liquid fertilizer from animal feces, raw Javanese medicinal herbs, and urine. We’re trying to start the work on this,â€ she said.
Meanwhile, the Deputy Dean for Academic and Research, Dr. Ir. Bambang Purwantana, M.Agr., said that water can be saved about 30%-40% with this system, which will help solve food, water, energy and environmental problems.
Related to development of local rice variety, according to Bambang, SRI Rice System is an effort to save varieties of rice germplasms. The advanced research and technology conducted by related boards are, however, still needed to produce 10 tons per hectare in different regions.
In that occasion, the winners of the championship that was followed by 200 farmers were announced. A farmer from Bantul regency was selected as the champion because he had harvested 13 tons/hectare of SRI rice.Â