Malkangiri is the southern most district of Odisha and lies between north latitudes 17⁰47’58” and 18⁰44’18” and East longitudes 81⁰23’23” and 82⁰27’05” with an area of 5,791 sq. km, and is divided into 7 blocks. This district is sparsely populated with a marginal difference between the numbers of males and females, with the literate males far outnumbering the literate females. Almost the whole district is a vast dense jungle, with a very small percentage of the population residing in the urban areas. The district is divided into two distinct physical divisions. The eastern part is sparsely inhabited by primitive tribes, notably the Bondas, Koyas, Porajas and Didayis.

The climate is generally cold during winter and hot in summer with temperature ranging from 13 °C to 47 °C. The average annual rainfall varies from 994.05 mm to 1809.53 with high relative humidity especially in the monsoon and post-monsoon months. During the rainy season, most areas of the district become impassably swampy and heavy floods and isolate it from the outer world. The soil type is predominantly Alfisols or red soil with red sandy and red loamy soils, poor in organic matter content with low fertility. In addition, Ultisols or lateritic soil occurs in a narrow diagonal strip and red to brown in colour and clayey in nature with low organic matter content.

Agriculture is the main occupations of the vast majority of the population, but because of forest cover and rugged terrain conditions agriculture is by and large confined to Kharif Season. Rabi cultivation is practised at places, where irrigation facilities are available. No uniform cropping pattern seems to be followed in the district. Shifting or ‘Podu’ cultivation is practised on high hill slopes. Paddy is the main crop sown during the Kharif seasons. Apart from paddy, other important Kharif crops are Maize, Ragi, millet and different type of pulses. In higher altitudes above 600 m potato is cultivated during Kharif season and rabi season oilseeds are the major crops.

KISAN Hub is a new programme funded by Department of Biotechnology (DBT), Government of India (GOI), under DBT’s mission programme, Biotech-Krishi Innovation Science Application Network (Biotech-KISAN) that empowers farmers through science and technology.