Decrease in Agricultural Holdings

The Department of Agriculture, Co-operation and Farmers Welfare conducts agriculture census every five years to collect data on structural characteristics of agricultural sector including size of agriculture land holdings in the country. As per the latest information available from Agriculture Census, the average size of operational holdings has decreased from 2.28 hectares in 1970-71 to 1.84 hectares in 1980-81, to 1.41 hectares in 1995-96 and to 1.08 hectares in 2015-16.

Considering the declining trends observed in the size of agriculture holdings in the past and the prospective increase in population over time, the fragmentation of holdings is likely to continue and the average size of operational holdings is expected to further decrease in the country including Kerala.

In order to make small holdings more viable and to assist augmentation of farm incomes, Government has taken several measures including adoption of modern technologies and practices like multiple cropping, intercropping and integrated farming systems. The Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR) is conducting research programmes to develop location specific varieties and technologies for enhancing the production and productivity of farm holdings. Support is also provided to farmers (including small and marginal farmers) through initiatives and programmes of the Government like Interest Subvention Scheme, Mission for Integrated Development of Horticulture (MIDH), National Food Security Mission (NFSM), Neem Coated Urea, Pradhan MantriKrishiSinchayeeYojana (PMKSY), Pradhan MantriFasalBimaYojana (PMFBY), National Mission for Sustainable Agriculture (NMSA) etc.

Except in the years of adverse weather, rainfall, temperature conditions, natural calamities etc., the production and productivity (per hectare production) of agriculture crops in the country has been generally increasing, as observed in the table given below:


All-India production of Food grains
Sl. No. Year Production 

(Million Tonnes)

1 2000-01 196.81
2 2005-06 208.60
3 2010-11 244.49
4 2015-16 251.54
5 2016-17 275.11
6 2017-18 285.01
7 2018-19 285.21
8 2019-20   291.95*

                                * Second advance estimate

Thus, there is no conclusive evidence to suggest that fragmentation of land holdings has resulted in adverse impact on agricultural production/yield.This information was given in a written reply by the Union Minister of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare, Shri Narendra Singh Tomar in Lok Sabha today.