National Mission for Sustainable Agriculture: NMSA - FeraxFarm

National Mission for Sustainable Agriculture (NMSA) is one of the eight projects of the National Action Plan for Climate Change (NAPCC). The project started in 2014-2015. 

NMSA aims to deal with the issues of sustainable agriculture associated with the risks of climate change by proposing appropriate adaptation and taking steps to promote food security, equal access to food resources, improvement of living standards, and national-level economic stability. 

Availability and quality of natural resources like land and water are essential for maintaining agricultural productivity. Promoting, protecting, and using these precious natural resources sustainably through suitable local measures can help support agricultural growth. 

Agriculture in India is primarily dependent on rain, and it covers approx. Fifty-one percent of the net agriculture area in India and 40 percent of total food production.

National Mission for Sustainable Agriculture (NMSA)

The national mission for sustainable agriculture is to deal with sustainable agricultural issues. Soil and water are two necessary natural resources for agriculture.

The protection of these natural resources, together with the development of rainfed cultivation, is a key to meeting the growing food grain demand of the country. 

To this end, the national mission for sustainable agriculture (NMSA) is designed to increase agricultural productivity, particularly in areas that depend on rain for cultivation, emphasizing integrated agriculture, soil health, efficient use of water, and the collaborative conservation of natural resources.

The project supports sustainable agriculture in India by focusing on the ten main farming areas.

These include seed improvement, livestock and fish farming, efficient water use, pest management, farm methods improvement, nutrition management, agricultural insurance, supporting farmers through credit, agricultural insurance, market facilities, information access, and livelihood diversification. 

NMSA Mission Objectives

  • The national mission for sustainable agriculture aims at profitable, sustainable, and climate-resilient agricultural production by strengthening integrated/mixed agrarian methods. 
  • Soil protection through suitable and moisture-saving methods. 
  • Introduce comprehensive methods for soil health based on soil fertility maps, use of macronutrients and nutrients based on soil tests, and wise use of fertilizers.  
  • Optimize the use of water with efficient water supply management to increase coverage to achieve higher yields per drop 
  • Build capacity for farmers and stakeholders, together with several other ongoing projects such as NFSM (National Food Security Mission)ATMA (National Mission on Agriculture Extension & Technology)(NICRA) National Initiative for Climate Resilient Agriculture, etc., for climate change adaptation and alleviation methods.
  • Experimental model at selected locations to increase rainfed agriculture productivity through integrating NICRA technology for rainwater supply and using other project resources such as the MGNREGA (Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act)IWMP (Integrated Watershed Management Programme), and RKVY (Rashtriya Krishi Vikas Yojana), etc. 
  • Establish effective coordination between inter ministries and intra ministries to achieve the main outputs of the National Sustainable Agriculture Project within the National Climate Change Plan (NAPCC). 

Also Read: Nutrients Required for Plant Growth

Mission NMSA Interventions

Interventions of the national mission for sustainable agriculture are: 

Seed, Fish Culture, and Livestock Improvement

This strategy aims to improve genetic characteristics to maintain short-term and long-term productivity by focusing on research and the development of disease-resistant genotypes.

At the same time, policy and compliance reforms regulatory regimes will support extensive research and greater acceptance of GM (Genetically modified) crops by producers and consumers.


  • Encourage the use of biotechnology 
  • C4 pathway research and its promotion in C3 plants
  • Protection of genetic resources
  • Public-private partnership in research and development in managing and spreading better varieties 
  • Agricultural heritage Preservation  

Efficient Use of Water 

Methods under this dimension will focus on implementing multiple technologies and supply and demand management solutions to increase water efficiency for irrigation.

In the short term, certain technologies are immediately available for use. They can be implemented directly, while other new areas, such as groundwater recharge, combined surface, groundwater use, extraction with control, etc., need corporation and increased capacity to absorb technology before being used sustainably. 

The role of municipalities in water management distribution and use is also a critical factor in promoting efficiency. Policy implements are needed to encourage the water technologies used for efficient water usage and encourage public-private partnerships.


  • Enhance water efficiency in irrigation.
  • Water-efficient systems research and development 
  • Develop methods for the integration of surface water, rainwater, and groundwater
  • Public-private partnerships policy implements
  • Make local institutions strong for water distribution and use management

Managing Pests 

The dimension under the national mission for sustainable agriculture aims to deal with pests. The health of livestock is affected because of the pesticide residues in water and feed because of the direct and indirect exposure to pesticides during their application.

The NMSA interventions focus mainly on setting up decision-making and information support systems for disease and pest control and displaying agricultural best practices and rapid response methods that meet the other natural calamities and disaster standards.    


  • Environmentally friendly, effective, and safe pest control methods
  • Promote bio-pesticide research, commercial production, and marketing
  • Develop models for insect prediction
  • Information on pest and disease control and decision support systems
  • Institutional mechanism for rapid disaster response

Improve Practices 

Improved farm practices intervention strategies are primarily based on promoting and implementing resource conservation technologies at the farm level and applying methods that support alleviation measures in extreme weather or disasters, such as prolonged droughts and floods.

In the short term, measures such as changing farm operations timing and increasing agricultural inputs can be used, while in the long term, other measures could be explored, including a focus on sustainable farming technologies and other best practices. 


  • Good agricultural practices to lower losses in farming 
  • Accuracy in farming and conservation 
  • Information management
  • Conservation of soil, using bio-fertilizers
  • The best land-use policy instruments

Managing Plant Nutrition 

Several nutrients are required for good plant growth. Managing plant nutrition is necessary to maintain and increase plant productivity to meet the needs of food and raw materials and preserve the quality of soil and water resources. 

Accurate soil resource registration is a prerequisite for ensuring soil health. Through several soil-specific treatments and local options health of soil can be enhanced. It has been found that the use of integrated nutrient management techniques increases the efficient use of nutrients by integrating and balancing nutrient intake.


  • Encourage bio-fertilizer production and use by strengthening services 
  • Nutritional development strategies to manage stress by heat in dairy animals
  • Increase existing soil analyzing laboratories capacity 
  • Increase trust among consumers through quality control and standard system strengthening.

Insurance for Agricultural 

Incentivize farmers under crop insurance to encourage farmers to use ingenious opportunities. This step will stabilize farmer income, allow farmers to repay their debts, ensure the financial institutions’ performance, and save the government’s considerable expenditures from waiving off agricultural loans.


  • Development of multiple risk assessment models. 
  • Support for easy-to-use decision-making designs of risk assessment systems and development of regional response plans. 
  • Making existing risk cover mechanisms strong within NAIS and weather-related crop insurance plans. 
  • Implementation of regional-specific response plans. 

Support Through Credit

Credit support under the national mission for sustainable agriculture supports small and marginal farmers. Timely and free support for loans to farmers is a key to maintaining farm productivity, particularly for small and marginalized farmers.

Timely and straightforward financial incentives, loans, and insurance for farmers help them adopt enhanced management methods, technologies for resource conservation, agricultural diversification, value-added processes after harvest, etc. It will help reduce risks and increase farm income.

Through retailers, self-help groups, etc., the delivery facility will help lend to low-income farmers, tiny and marginal farmers, to sustain climate change.


  • Development of modern credit forms of assessment and risk management systems
  • Micro-finance encouragement 
  • To improve crucial infrastructures, develop a credit flow mechanism 
  • Kisan Credit Card System Expansion (KCC).
  • Design customized credit policies and risk mitigation programs.

Informational Access

Information and communication regarding weather are critical in farmers’ help to adapt to climate change as the weather becomes more volatile and less predictable. New information management policies may be needed to maintain the level of production. 

This dimension is transverse with influences at all levels of the agricultural production system and other vital elements. 

At the level of crops, emphasis should be placed on involving public and private parties in research institutions so that the results of research institutes can be quickly marketed.


  • Information inequality minimization by ICT-based systems
  • Develop technology through a public-private partnership to provide farmers with information on prices, raw materials, imports, shipping prices, etc 
  • Build an ICT-based knowledge management system 
  • National resource portals creation, management, and development 

Diversification of Livelihood

An important role is played by livelihood diversification in supporting income from primary agricultural activities through on-farm or off-farm activities.

It reduces risks by providing support to farm incomes affected by climate change and offers options to sustain investments on farms for sound production. And generate income through alternative livelihood options. 

Strategies of livelihood diversification focus on promoting agriculture diversification into high-value crops and other gardening crops, research, development, and expansion of agricultural systems, enhance focus and development of aquaculture, sericulture, agro-forestry, etc.


  • By off-farm activities, integration reduces risks
  • Diversification or crops
  • Fish farming methods-crop-livestock

Providing Market

This dimension of the national mission for sustainable agriculture focuses on infrastructure, market information, storage, etc.

Insufficient marketing infrastructure, too many intermediaries, absence of market intelligence and information, and insufficient storage space create significant losses after the harvest in the food supply chain.

Major, critical initiatives include reducing quantitative and qualitative losses throughout the supply chain and creating a market-friendly production system.

Make a strong climate change-resistant management, storage, marketing, and distribution system. Enhance well-timed access for farmers to high-quality inputs, strong ties between farmers, factories, and industry, and make the food industry and exports strong.


  • Design market-specific research and development plans
  • Supply chain efficiency enhancement
  • Newmarket infrastructure creation
  • Support for cooperation in the development of food and feed banks
  • Improve access to quality and timely contributions from small farmers to reduce risk


The NMSA project is one of the eight projects of the National Action Plan for Climate Change (NAPCC) to address issues in sustainable agriculture. Several steps under this plan are taken to ensure food security and improve the living standards of farmers and the nation’s economy.

The project focuses on soil improvement, efficient water use, pest management, nutritional requirements, seed improvement, bio-fertilizers use, etc. In short, the project mitigates the issues in sustainable agriculture.  


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