Innovation of the day
D. Renganathan alias D.N. Venkat is an agriculturist from Coimbatore, Tamil Nadu and has developed a coconut tree climber with a sitting arrangement, locking system and a safety belt. He noticed the problems in climbing coconut/palm trees and decided to address all the issues and designed a simple low cost tree climber.
It has a seating provision and has two frames. The upper frame is operated by hand while the lower one is operated by leg. The user sits comfortably on the seat and by the up and down movement of upper and lower frame, one can climb the tree. A locking system has been provided, which enables the climber to work without fear at any height. To avoid the possibility of a fall, a four lock pin can be fixed at any height. One can climb up to 40 ft in 5 minutes (this includes time needed in fixing, climbing up- down and removal of device from tree). One of the major advantages of this machine is that it is useful for trees with different girth.
Coconut Tree climbers are a rarity these days in Kerala and other coconut growing states of Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, Maharashtra and Goa, with very few taking on the traditional profession. There is a reluctance to enter this field because of the occupational risk and the arduous labor involved in climbing tall coconut trees. Due to scarcity of labor as against the general norm of harvesting cycles of 45-60 days, farmers are currently able to harvest only once in three to four months.
There are three variants - Coconut Tree Climber, Multi Tree Climber and Tree Walker. Multi Tree Climber Equipment is suitable for climbing coconut, palm, teak, and rubber, silver oak & similar trees. Major attributes of this innovation are Easy Handling, less weight, easy transportation, zero maintenance, any level of height could be climbed, and women could also use it with ease. It’s a great offering for the people in the trade that involves climbing a tree.
D.N. Venkat was conferred with an award during 6th National Grassroots Innovation Awards.