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Rang De Social Investors Revolutionising Potato Farming in Assam

In the verdant landscapes of Assam, traditionally known for its lush tea gardens and bountiful rice fields, a transformative shift is taking root, thanks to the collaborative efforts of SV AGRI Foods and 3914 Rang De Social Investors. This partnership is not just about altering the agricultural landscape; it's about pioneering a sustainable future for potato farming, ensuring food security, and empowering farmers with innovative solutions and financial inclusivity.

Bridging the Gap with Innovation and Support

Assam's tryst with potato farming has been fraught with challenges. Despite fertile lands, the yield of potato crops has historically been low when compared to other states. This is where SV AGRI Foods steps in. By introducing 21 varieties of seeds imported from the Netherlands tailored specifically to thrive in Assam's unique climate, SV AGRI has not only boosted the production potential but also ensured that these varieties cater to both table and processing needs.

potato farmer in their field.

The commitment of SV AGRI doesn't end with seed provision. Understanding the financial strain that potato farming can impose—requiring at least ₹15,000 per bigha for essentials like irrigation, fertilisers, and medicines—SV AGRI has established a safety net for farmers. Through MoUs, they guarantee a Minimum Support Price of ₹12 per kg, ensuring that the farmers' hard work does not go unrewarded due to market volatility. This approach not only secures the farmers' income but also encourages them to adopt potato farming as a viable and profitable venture.

Empowering Through Education and Infrastructure

SV AGRI's holistic approach extends to education and infrastructure support. Recognizing the critical importance of knowledge in enhancing yield and quality, they offer comprehensive training programs for farmers according to the variety of seeds chosen. This hand-holding through the crop cycle, coupled with pre-harvest agreements and crop insurance, ensures that farmers are well-prepared and protected against unforeseen adversities.

Rang De Officials at a Potato farm
Rang De team at a Potato farm in Assam

Moreover, the establishment of storage facilities addresses one of the critical challenges in the potato value chain—preserving the harvest. By providing farmers access to these facilities, SV AGRI not only ensures the longevity of the produce but also helps in stabilising prices and reducing post-harvest losses.

A Financial Lifeline Through Rang De

While SV AGRI addresses the agricultural challenges, Rang De tackles the financial barrier of access to credit. Traditional financial solutions often fall short in meeting the immediate and specific needs of potato farmers, who require substantial funds at the onset of the planting season. Rang De fills this gap by offering immediate and affordable credit at 6-8% interest -- a game-changer for this community of underbanked farmers.

This partnership between SV AGRI and Rang De has already made significant progress, with 682 farmers benefiting from the program, including 303 first-time borrowers. This credit has not only facilitated the purchase of high-yield variety seeds and essential input materials but also played a crucial role in building credit histories for these farmers, fostering financial inclusion and empowerment. All of this credit has been powered by Rang De social investors.

potato harvest from XAMAHAR farmers

The collaboration between SV AGRI and Rang De is more than just a business model; it's a vision for a sustainable future in the potato value chain. From seed production and marketing to procurement, storage, and even food processing solutions, this partnership aims to revolutionise the potato farming landscape in Assam. The introduction of low GI Carisma Varieties for diabetic consumers highlights their commitment to innovation and health.

Overall, the entire sustainable farming community has been enabled  by facilitating financial literacy programs, training, and capacity-building initiatives, 

A Model For Future Potato Farmers

The partnership between SV AGRI and Rang De is a testament to the power of collaboration in addressing complex challenges. By combining agricultural innovation with financial inclusion and access to credit, we are not just transforming potato farming in Assam but also setting a precedent for other regions and crops.

As we look to the future, the success of this initiative offers hope and a model for replication, promising not just higher yields and better incomes for farmers, but also a more sustainable and resilient agricultural sector. It's a partnership that doesn't just aim to change the way potatoes are farmed in Assam but also seeks to inspire change across the agricultural landscape, ensuring food security, and empowering farmers across India and beyond. 

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