Impact of Startups on Indian Agriculture and Rural Growth
A rise in agritech firms in recent years has been called the “ray of hope” for Indian agriculture
According to Census (2011), more than 50% of India’s workforce is employed in agriculture and related sectors, and the sector itself would account for 18.8% of the nation’s Gross Value Added (GVA) for the year 2021–22 (at current prices), according to First Advance Estimates.
India has the second-largest agricultural land area in the world, and agriculture provides a living for almost 60% of rural Indian households. A rise in agritech firms in recent years has been called the “ray of hope” for Indian agriculture. Additionally, it is increasingly clear that agritech firms may offer pertinent and original answers to the problems encountered throughout the agricultural value chain. For an understanding of the transformative influence employing technology may have on revolutionizing agricultural processes and, consequently, the lives of individuals linked with the agricultural business, examples from nations like Israel, China, and the US can be used.
Numerous additional technical applications, including AI, IoT, Big Data Analytics, drones for farm mapping, ICT applications, weather forecasting technologies, and many others, demonstrate the potential that Indian agritech entrepreneurs have to alter the nation’s agricultural sector.
The startups operating in this sector confront various difficulties. The challenges faced by startups in this sector include a lack of knowledge about sowing and pre-harvest activities, a lack of awareness of government policies at the farm level, a lack of infrastructure and connectivity, a lack of skilled labor for adopting tech integration at the farm level, among others. The public and commercial sectors are working to solve these problems. The “Agriculture Accelerator Fund” and the “Agricultural Credit Target” were boosted in Budget 2023, emphasizing animal husbandry, dairy, and fisheries.
The goal of agricultural credit was also increased to Rs. 20 lakh crore. Despite all the difficulties the sector faces, many startups are rising in the agriculture industry. These businesses are introducing fresh, cutting-edge approaches to address some of the most pressing problems, creating job opportunities, and enhancing the standard of living for those in the industry.
Data as of April 10, 2023, show that about 374 DPIIT-recognized companies in the agriculture sector are distributed throughout 490 districts, employing about 38,000 people. More than 18,000 people are employed by the approximately 2207 DPIIT-accredited startups in the agri-tech sector, distributed over 360 districts. Maharashtra has 459 officially recognized startups, according to data as of April 17, 2023.
For a better understanding of the revolutionary influence that technology can have on revolutionizing agricultural methods and, ultimately, the lives of those involved in the agricultural business, nations like Israel, China, and the US may be used as models to help this sector thrive. Numerous additional technical applications, including AI, IoT, Big Data Analytics, drones for farm mapping, ICT applications, weather forecasting technologies, and many others, demonstrate the potential that Indian agritech entrepreneurs have to alter the nation’s agricultural sector.
Startups in the spotlight: Fruvetech Private Limited is working to create a gadget that would extend the shelf life of fruits. ‘Fasal’ is a brand of Wolkus Technology Solutions Private Limited, which creates an IoT platform for precision agriculture powered by artificial intelligence. The start-up Natura Crop Care has created biological and botanical solutions to address the need for residue-free food and to assist farmers worldwide in regulating plant nutrition and soil health.
The industry is positioned for fast expansion in the upcoming years due to the growing usage of digital technology and the rise of startups. Agritech entrepreneurs are creating ground-breaking solutions for numerous facets of agriculture, such as supply chain management, market connections, and precision farming. These innovations can raise production, lower costs, and boost farmer revenue. As the industry expands, it can alter India’s agricultural industry, generate new job opportunities, and advance the national economy. Farm entrepreneurs must focus on their goals of independence and sustainability as we go forward, building on prior achievements. The idea of an independent India is ingrained in the startup environment and will continue to serve as a compass in the future.
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