National: Corteva Agriscience, the global agriculture company, is working towards establishing an ecosystem of Farmer Producer Organizations (FPO) in multiple States across India, including Madhya Pradesh (MP) and Bihar. The company is focused on promoting agri-entrepreneurship, especially for women, by supporting seven FPOs in the districts of MP. This includes training on agricultural methods, providing access to multi-brand agri inputs, crop advisory to create market linkages, and an end-to-end value chain.
Dr Aruna Rachakonda, Marketing Director, Corteva Agriscience™, South Asia, said “Lack of effective and formal ownership of resources and productive assets coupled with the gendered division of roles usually holds back women from claiming equal space in the realm of economic activities. Through these women centered FPOs, Corteva is working towards integrating women smallholder farmers into mainstream farming, by economically and socially empowering them as entrepreneurs running their own business.”
Corteva has been helping FPOs in the Bhoura and Paraswada regions of Madhya Pradesh by providing technical grooming of agriculture entrepreneurship and leadership training to build confidence, financial literacy and negotiation tactics for women farmers/ agri entrepreneurs. To further strengthen the FPO business, the company is also providing financial support towards agri inputs. The team at Corteva arranged several types of machinery trainings and other best practices in paddy and corn for women farmers to enhance adoption of sustainable agri practices.
The prestigious award ‘Year of The FPO 2019-20’ by Access Development Services to Chirayu Women Farmer Producer Company Limited (CWCPCL), Bhoura is an endorsement of Corteva’s efforts to improve farmer presence in the market, enabling them to access available resources and as a result, better value for their produce. The FPO commenced its operation with 200 women shareholders for the production and marketing of vegetables and maize. Currently, it serves 1000 women shareholders for the production and marketing of maize, gram, and wheat. The enterprise is supporting maize production in more than 2000 acres; annually marketing more than 700 tons of maize to different industries; doing an annual business of nearly Rs 2 crores, thereby helping FPO members realise an additional return of Rs 15000 from an acre of land.
With an aim to improve rural livelihoods through market-oriented interventions, Corteva has been supporting clusters of rural agri-entrepreneurs across India. These FPOs have leveraged the strength of collectivization, facilitating farmers with ample number of opportunities to become key stakeholders in the ag value chain. As a result of these efforts, the farmers in these regions have better access to quality input, technology, credit and better marketing linkages. With these interventions, the average yield productivity also increased by 40 per cent, further resulting in enhanced income for these farmers.