Partnership to benefit over 42,000 farmers in Mysore region
MUMBAI, 17 June 2020: Bayer CropScience Limited is partnering with ITC Limited’s Agri Business Division to extend the reach of its Crop Protection products through ITC’s e-Choupal 4.0 platform.
The partnership has commenced as a pilot project in Mysore, Karnataka and will gradually be expanded to other geographies across India.
With Covid-19 disrupting farming operations and on-farm advisory, this initiative will help farmers avail agri-inputs and digital advisory on a timely basis.
ITC & Bayer are jointly training and on-boarding retailers in the Mysore region, to cater to farmers’ orders placed through the e-Choupal 4.0 platform. Field Officers from both companies have also received extensive training on product knowledge and technical advisory to support farmers.
Farmers can place their order for Bayer products through the e-Choupal 4.0 platform and track their orders. Farmers without access to smartphones can place their orders online with assistance from Bayer & ITC’s field staff or even place offline orders.
Speaking about the partnership with ITC, D. Narain, CEO & MD of Bayer CropScience Limited, said, “Farmers in India often struggle to get access to agri-inputs, training and advisory under one roof. Lack of modern technologies and good agricultural practices hamper crop productivity and farm profitability. The partnership with ITC aims to offer tailored solutions, enabling farmers to achieve better harvests and progress to sustainable agriculture.
“We also plan to leverage ITC’s extensive rural reach to create capacity building for adoption of greater product stewardship and traceability of produce,” Narain said.
Elaborating on the partnership with Bayer, Sanjiv Rangrass of ITC Limited, who has been driving the e-Choupal 4.0 initiative said, “While agronomic advisory is essential to the farmer, information on best practices alone is not sufficient to improve their profitability. Farmers routinely battle adulteration, product non-availability and arbitrary pricing. Consequently, they are not able to make informed purchasing decisions. Therefore, it is essential to provide farmers with access to the right set of products and services.
“ITC’s e-Choupal 4.0 platform aims at providing on-demand crop advisory linked to products & services across the value chain. ITC’s collaboration with Bayer will enable access to quality inputs by digitalizing the local marketplace eco-system for farmers. This will leverage Bayer’s expertise in agri-inputs and ITC’s deep-rooted linkages with farmers through the e-Choupal 4.0 platform, thereby creating value and a brand of trust for the farmers,” Rangrass said.
Over 42,000 ITC farmers, covering 60,000 hectares across 1,100 villages in Mysore region will benefit from the partnership with Bayer.