For centuries now, agriculture has long been considered a rural occupation. However, in the past decade, urban millennials have radically changed the face of farming in India. Although the number of young people venturing into farming may appear negligible, their success stories speak for themselves. Here are 3 millennials who ditched the grind of urban jobs and followed their heart.
Samir Bordoloi: The man behind north-east India’s Green Army
Quitting his job in a popular MNC, Samir Bordoloi made his way back to his home in northeastern India to transform the way farmers out there went about their business. He quickly identified that these were the two major problems faced by farmers in the northeast.
- Growing cash crops instead of indigenous food crops
- Reluctance to adopt organic farming methods
To work around these problems, Samir encouraged farmers in the area to grow more local produce so they could maximize their profits. He then ensured the use of ecological farming methods that would be sustainable and yet cheaper than conventional organic techniques. Spread across the North East, his NGO, now employs over 300 Green Commandos who support local farmers and help them achieve better profits with greener techniques.
Abhishek Singhania: IITian-turned-farmer
From IIT Madras, to PwC Mumbai, to Saudi Arabia, and then to the farms of West Bengal, Abhishek Singhania’s journey has been inimitable. Despite the abundance of water in Bengal, he noticed that farmers were struggling to make a decent profit. On speaking to the local farmers, he understood that the factors leading to this sorry state of affairs were:
- Cultivation of low value crops
- Lack of crop rotation
- Increasing input costs coupled with low yields
To understand things better, he visited several natural farms and obtained first-hand training from experienced natural farmers. Then, in 2016, Singhania began to cultivate crops in his own new farm near Kolkata. In a short span of 9 months, he succeeded in harvesting cabbages, capsicums, cauliflower, spinach, cucumber, mustard, green gram, and even Dehradun Basmati.
Ranjana Kukreti: A woman at the top of her game
Ranjana Kukreti is living proof that professional farming isn’t only for the men. Cultivating a variety of crops including rice, paddy, tomatoes, chilies, cucumber, and spinach, she’s a one-woman army that’s transforming the face of agriculture in her Uttarkhand. Unlike most other urban millennials, Kukreti was always aware that she wanted to pursue farming. Agriculture is her primary source of income, and the tech-savvy millennial farmer is constantly updating her techniques to better the quality and quantity of crop yield.
At the International Rice Research Institute’s headquarters in the Philippines, she learned the importance of a cropping calendar. She’s constantly looking out for training, finance, and technology that could better her techniques. Aside from her primary crops, Kukreti also cultivates potted oyster and button mushrooms owing to their high demand in the market. You can also check about business loan schemes for women.
Here’s how urban millennials can venture into farming
A survey of around 5,000 households engaged in farming revealed that 76% of farmers would prefer to give up farming and get jobs in the city. This situation can be improved if more urban millennials venture into the agricultural and allied industries and lay the groundwork for making farming in India more tech-oriented.
If this sounds like something you’d want to do, here’s how you can do it efficiently.
Get capital ready: To raise capital for your new venture, it’s not advisable to dig into your savings or investments. A smarter alternative would be to obtain a business loan for agriculture. With good credit scores, you could get an attractive rate of interest.
If you do decide to take out a business loan for agriculture, approach different financial institutions to see where you get the best terms. Alternatively, you could shop around online and compare the interest rates offered by different loan marketplaces, such as Finserv MARKETS. If you’re interested in availing loans through a hassle-free process, Finserv MARKETS is the right place for you. Eligible candidates can get loans approved in as few as 3 minutes. And that’s not all. On Finserv MARKETS, the disbursal is smooth and the repayment terms are easy on the borrower.
Make use of new-age tech solutions: Even rural farmers are growing increasingly dependent on innovative solutions such as RML AgTech’s mobile app, which offers useful agricultural inputs like the right amount of water needed to cultivate crops and the most effective solutions to get rid of pests.
Startups like Pindfresh are even making urban farming possible for people who want to venture into farming without moving from their cities. They help set up rooftop gardens and make other spaces within high-rise building more conducive to farming by using soilless strategies and hydroponics. So, there’s really no end to the innovation that’s being put out there. Use this to your advantage if you want to venture into farming in India. Since such solutions, most definitely won’t come cheap, you can opt for a Bajaj Finserv business loan for agriculture on Finserv MARKETS and avail loans of up to 30 lakhs.
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