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Syngenta India Together with Adani Agri Fresh to Boost Apple Production in Himachal Pradesh

Syngenta India has developed and introduced the concept of ‘Apple Model Farm’ in Himachal Pradesh under which from providing apple protocol to adopting the best practices, the growers are enabled through stewardship training to have bumper safe crop of quality fruits.

Shivam Dwivedi
Syngenta India & Adani Agri Fresh at Apple Model Farm
Syngenta India & Adani Agri Fresh at Apple Model Farm

India’s two leading agro firms- Syngenta India and Adani Agri Fresh (AAF)- have come together to boost apple growers in Himachal Pradesh by enabling them through a complete crop protocol and hassle-free pick up of crop for their orchards and timely payment.       

Syngenta India is making available to apple growers the best crop solutions aimed at ensuring better and healthier crops, while AAF ensures the ease of marketing their apples by lifting them right from the orchard itself, thus paving the way for apple growers’ holistic growth along with sustained increase in their income.

Syngenta India has developed and introduced the concept of ‘Apple Model Farm’ in Himachal Pradesh under which from providing apple protocol to adopting the best practices, the growers are enabled through stewardship training to have bumper safe crop of quality fruits.

“The idea is to give a positive impetus to apple farming in Himachal Pradesh. The ‘Apple Model Farm’ at Shedapani village, Rampur in Shimla district, is a testimony to the fact that apple production can be taken to the next level by encouraging farmers to adopt innovations and stick to the best practices,” said Dr KC Ravi, Chief Sustainability Officer, Syngenta India.

“We are happy to partner with Syngenta India which is helping farmers with best practices to produce quality fruits. With Farm-Pik, we aim to march a step ahead by carefully sourcing these nutritious apples from selected apple farms located on the foothills of Himachal Pradesh, thereby ensuring that only high quality apples reach our customers,” said Mr Manjeet Sheelu, Plant Head Adani Farm-Pik.

Highlighting the importance of model farms, Dr Narendra Kait, Principal Scientist at KVK, Shimla said, "These model farms under the guidance of Syngenta India can be a great platform to implement and share best practices to set an example for rest of the farmers to follow. He also mentioned maintaining diary of operations, numbering the plants and closely monitoring them during the process is equally important”.

Syngenta India has supported Dinesh Bhandari, the owner of Himachal Pradesh’s first ‘Apple Model Farm’ with crop protocol, stewardship training and related best practices, which has helped him to have better fruit quality, more fruits per basket and much less loss to the fruit.

“Their guidance has helped me a lot. From use of fertilizers to crop protection solutions, inputs of Syngenta have led to robust crops,” said Dinesh. His ‘Apple Model Farm’ is spread in an area of around 14.5 bighas and he is expecting a better crop. “For the first time, I have implemented best crop practices as per the protocol of Syngenta. I am happy with the outcome. The overall crop is much better as compared to the previous years,” added Dinesh.

“Syngenta practices helped in improving soil health for optimum nutrient usage, increased biodiversity around the farm, and the stewardship practices for safe use of crop protection products was extremely helpful”, explained Dinesh.

A teacher in English at DPS, Jhakri, Dinesh has over 600 apple plants in his orchard with their age ranging from six to 20 years. Syngenta developed the apple protocol to support him. This year, he used Syngenta protocol for 50-60 plants and the results are excellent like fruit elongation, weight, shape, fruit press, and more bearing.

According to Dr Ravi, Syngenta innovates with world-class science to protect crops and improve seeds. Our core businesses support farmers with technologies, knowledge and services so that they can sustainably provide us with better food, feed, fibre, and fuel.

“In Himachal Pradesh, apple is grown on about 50 percent of the total area under horticulture, and comprises 85 per cent of state’s total fruit production. We are ready to help them with the entire crop protocol, which will lead to good harvest and enhance farmer’s income, which is our collective responsibility,” added Dr Ravi.

Syngenta India’s apple protocol comes at a time when the state’s staple fruit crop is coping with several challenges arising out of unusually warm weather conditions and less snowfall. Due to the unusually high temperature, the trees bloom in advance, which has a negative impact on the fruit size.

Adani Agri Fresh Limited (AAFL) is engaged in organized apple purchase, storage and marketing. AAFL has set up its state-of-the-art controlled atmospheric storage in Shimla district at Bithal, Sainj, and Mehandli, covering more than 17000 apple growers in Himachal Pradesh and comprising more than 90 percent small and marginal farmers for sourcing apples spread across 700 villages.

Those present during the visit to ‘Apple Model Farm’ included Dr Narendra Kait, Principal Scientist, KVK, Shimla, Syngenta’s Deepak Kumar, DML, North-1, Sarafarz Bashir, BM, HP, Narendra Saini, TM, Shimla, Praveen HM, Lead, Value Chain; Chidambar Phadnis, Rajashekhar Katagi, Vipin Puri, KRM, VC, Rajendra Deshmukh, technical experts and others.

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