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From Farmer to Entrepreneur: The Journey of Padma Shri Awardee Kanwal Singh Chauhan

Kanwal Singh Chauhan's journey from cultivating baby corn and mushrooms to becoming an entrepreneur is a tale of resilience. Recognised with the Padma Shri Award, this farmer has extensively worked in baby corn cultivation and mushroom farming in Haryana.

KJ Staff
Kanwal Singh Chauhan manages around 20 acres of land dedicated to cultivating the 5,414 variety of baby corn.
Kanwal Singh Chauhan manages around 20 acres of land dedicated to cultivating the 5,414 variety of baby corn.

Meet Kanwal Singh Chauhan, a farmer from Atterna village in Sonipat district, Haryana, whose journey from agriculture to entrepreneurship is truly remarkable. Specialising in baby corn and mushroom cultivation, Chauhan, is also a lawyer and has earned accolades with the Padma Shri Award for his role in the Indian Agricultural landscape. Let's delve into the story of this farmer turned entrepreneur.

From Baby Corn to Mushroom Cultivation

Kanwal Singh Chauhan has been cultivating baby corn since 1998. Currently, more than 10,000 farmers in the region are engaged in baby corn cultivation, with their produce reaching international markets. Chauhan himself manages around 20 acres of land dedicated to cultivating the 5,414 variety of baby corn. He has also started selling baby corn to five-star hotels in Delhi, expanding his market reach and boosting sales.

Diversification Amid Challenges

While sharing his story with Krishi Jagran, he stated that when he faced a decline in the demand for baby corn at one point, he diversified his crop offerings. He established his food processing unit and produced a variety of products such as strawberry puree, button mushrooms, sweet corn, and more. This strategic move not only sustained his business but also contributed to the employment of hundreds in the local community.

Creating Employment Opportunities

As mentioned earlier, the success of Kanwal Singh Chauhan has not only elevated him but has also employed over 400 individuals presently working on his farm. Recognising the potential of baby corn cultivation, neighboring farmers joined hands with him, further contributing to the growth of the local economy.

Exporting Success

Chauhan's processing unit exports its products, including baby corn, button mushrooms, tomato puree, and sweet corn, to countries like England and America. The unit has become a symbol of quality and innovation, showcasing the capabilities of Indian farmers on the global stage.

Economic Viability of Farming

Discussing the financial aspects, Chauhan explained that the cost of cultivation per acre is approximately Rs 20,000, while the profits can go up to Rs 50,000. This financial success story demonstrates the economic viability of farming when approached with innovation and dedication.

Sustainable Agriculture Practices

He emphasised the importance of sustainable agriculture, Chauhan advised minimal use of chemical fertilizers and pesticides. He encourages fellow farmers to adopt eco-friendly practices, contributing to both environmental preservation and the production of healthier crops.

Banking Support and Government Initiatives

Chauhan highlighted the need for banks to play a more active role in supporting farmers. He suggests that financial institutions should collaborate with the government to ensure that the benefits of agricultural schemes reach farmers effectively, fostering overall rural development.

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