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Farmer aggregation and Agribusiness linkages

Aggregation for strengthening farmers' capacity

Aggregation is one of the most effective means of reducing the risk in agriculture and strengthening the livelihoods of small and marginal farmers. By collaborating through farmer groups and FPOs, farmers have better capacity for and access to technical know-how on crop planning and management, inputs (including seed production), credit, post-harvest management, value addition, marketing infrastructure and better market linkages. The aggregation approach also helps small and marginal farmers in accessing various benefits of government schemes for rural development. The process involves mobilising farmers into groups of between 15-20 members at the village level (called Farmer Interest Groups or FIGs) and building up their associations to an appropriate federating point i.e. Farmer Producer Organisations (FPOs). ISAP has done pioneering work on promoting and strengthening the FPO structure as a tool to address the challenges of access to investment, technology, quality inputs and integration with markets that the small and marginal farmers face. ISAP's goal is to improve the production, productivity and profitability of these farmers.

Agribusiness village resource centres for effective aggregation and provision of farm services

To achieve the objectives of farmer aggregation in context of sourcing of inputs, credit, value addition and sale of output, the critical link is a local facilitation centre, which provides all the necessary services to farmers of member FPOs in their quest to become more productive and efficient as viable farm enterprises. These agribusiness village resource centres (AVRCs) are managed by their associated FPOs and are equipped to handle provision of a variety of services and also to nurture farmers for tapping growth-oriented opportunities through targeted assistance and capacity building. They are planned based on a study of the local input-output market demand, opportunities and financing solutions and can help FPOs function effectively as aggregators. This approach encourages rural entrepreneurship for offering service linkages with medium and larger commodity buyers and input sellers, which can eventually help build a more efficient value chain. ISAP's FPO programmes include setting up of such support institutions as well.

Custom hiring cum agribusiness centres

While smallholdings have higher productivity compared to medium and large farms, it is not enough to compensate the cost of cultivation per hectare for the small and marginal farmers. Through timeliness of operations, increase in land productivity, saving in labour requirement and reduction in human drudgery, farm mechanisation leads to increase in output and productivity, safety and ease in farming and improved returns and profitability. While farm machinery is not affordable for an individual farmer, if the crop is not sown or harvested in a given time frame, the risk of crop failure increases. ISAP facilitates establishment of Custom Hire cum Agribusiness Centres (CHACs) that provide necessary farm machinery at reasonable rates.

Indian Society of Agribusiness Professionals
  • Farmer Households
  • Agri-Preneurs
  • BPL youth
  • Women
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