Water is going to be most critical input in the future for agriculture in general and rice in particular. Of all the crops, rice uses more than 70 % of all irrigation water in India. Also, there is a notion that higher yields in rice come with high investments on seed, irrigation, high doses of fertilizers and more use of pesticides. This practice not only results in higher cost of cultivation but also may not give the desired results in the longer run. Contrary to this popular view, SRI method of cultivation produces higher yields with less seed and less water. SRI also emphasizes on the need to shift from chemical fertilizers to organic manures.
The results of a study in Katkur and Bonkallur villages of Jangaon mandal of Warangal district of Andhra Pradesh indicated that the yield advantage with SRI method was 22.8% and 22.5% respectively for Katkur and Bonkallur villages respectively. The net income obtained in Katkur was Rs.9241/acre in conventional method whereas it was Rs.21847/acre in case of SRI method. The net income obtained in Bonkallur was Rs.13393/acre in conventional method whereas it was Rs.19212/acre in case of SRI method of rice cultivation.
From the various results stated on SRI in India, it can be concluded that SRI method of rice cultivation has yield advantage of around 25% to 55% in various states. The large scale adoption of SRI helps in enhancing production and productivity of rice in India. It also helps in releasing more income by the farmers, because of its yield advantage over the conventional method of rice cultivation.
The SRI has proven ability to increase rice production by about 25 per cent or more depending on the extent of adherence to its basic principles. More importantly, SRI saves up to 40 per cent water due to alternate drying and wetting system, which is considered a unique advantage of SRI. The farmers are convinced of the benefits of SRI and hence its adoption is spreading on a larger scale.