MFOI 2024 Road Show

Interviews

In Conversation with Satish Tiwari, Vice President, Sales and Marketing, Gencrest

"I felt the need to preserve the microbes and organic manure in the soil," said, Satish Tiwari, Vice President, Sales and Marketing, Gencrest (Picture Courtesy: KJ)
"I felt the need to preserve the microbes and organic manure in the soil," said, Satish Tiwari, Vice President, Sales and Marketing, Gencrest (Picture Courtesy: KJ)

Satish Tiwari, Vice President of Sales and Marketing at Gencrest, recently visited the head office of Krishi Jagran in Delhi, where he shared his valuable insights on natural and sustainable biotechnological solutions in agriculture with the team in KJ Chaupal.

Krishi Jagran also had the privilege of interviewing Mr Tiwari where he talked about the importance of artificial intelligence in agriculture and why farmers should explore more opportunities in agriculture to earn better prices for their yield.

1. When did you feel the necessity to embark on a journey of sustainable agriculture in India and how is it going to benefit Indian agriculture?

Today, sustainability has become a global mission due to many reasons. People are not getting the required nutrients that they want to see in their food because of the excessive use of chemical fertilizers and pesticides. Moreover, the land is also not responding to the inputs that farmers are using because of the destruction caused by chemical substances. So, globally people are afraid that the soil will not be productive for the crops they grow. Therefore, considering the importance of soil, people have started preserving it and making it more productive. That’s how sustainable agriculture became essential in today’s agriculture.

Talking about myself, I belong to a farming community and I have seen farms, where day by day, agricultural productivity is decreasing along with the declining fertilizer response ratio. So, keeping that in mind, I felt the need to preserve the microbes and organic manure in the soil so that we can have good food today and meet tomorrow’s needs.

2. What are the expected challenges one has to face if he or she is adopting sustainable agriculture?

In India, farmers are facing a lot of problems due to marginal farming, especially when farming becomes a non-profitable business and the entire family is dependent on farming. Therefore, it becomes important that he produces more for himself and feeds the growing population along. At the same time, he has to conserve the soil and make sure that whatever he is producing should be marketable, which will help him get a good price for his yield.

Now, when we talk about organic farming, sustainability, or precise farming, we never mean that farmers should completely avoid the use of chemicals in organic farming. So, here the major challenges involve where the farmer fears whether the productivity or income will come down. Now, increasing the income is not the objective. The objective is to use innovative agriculture inputs, which may involve organic, nano, or even micronutrients, in such a way that they can complement other inputs, thereby helping farmers to grow more. 

It is also difficult for farmers to change immediately with the new technology adoption. It takes time to adapt to the change, but we are going in the right direction and hopefully, at least half of us can be towards organic farming.

3. How would you describe the use of Artificial Intelligence in agriculture?

Now, Artificial Intelligence (AI) is helping humans in many ways in various segments. In agriculture also, AI will play a major role in not just weather forecasting but also weed management and disease forecasting. It is already being practiced in some parts of the agricultural work. In India, it is progressing and will help the farmers at a larger stage. Farmers need to use chemicals aggressively, instead can use AI to protect their crops from weeds and other diseases. So, AI is a highly beneficial technology that will help the farmers in India.

4. Would you like to share some insights that would benefit Indian agriculture or the Indian farmers?

We are talking about crop rotation and the Government of India is also focusing on certain crops like maize and celebrating the year of millet. So, my request to the farmers is that they should not stick with just wheat, paddy, or any common crops, rather should cultivate the crops that are marketable and consume less inputs. They can also come up with precision farming so that they can produce and sell their products at a higher market price hence, growing their income. Therefore, a farmer must come out of the regular grains that they grow on farms. It would be better if they could cultivate different varieties of horticulture crops through hydroponic techniques.

Interviewed by: Parvathy Pillai

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