At Mahyco, we invest time, efforts and resources to bring innovation in seed technology to the core of agriculture. Being synonymous with pioneering the advent of biotechnology in seeds for the benefit of Indian farmers, comes with its own responsibilities. And hence, we continue to get better than before and innovate in technology across row and vegetable crops to make agriculture a profitable and attractive occupation.
One such effort focused at creating renewed awareness and interest in seed technology, was the Mahyco Innovation Day which was organized at our Jalna farms. The objective was to create a platform for progressive farmers to come together and meet with our scientists and breeders, so that they could have detailed discussions and transparent interactions with those who developed the technology?
When the initiative was announced, I recall how all of us were excited and enthused. Together, we divided responsibilities, as everyone understood the relevance and importance of such a platform. In a day and age, where innovation in seed technology is highly misunderstood, this was an opportunity for us to guide, explain and educate the farmer about the merit of using innovation in seeds. The three day event hosted over 2000 farmers and students from Maharashtra and nearby states who came to witness the wide variety of technology from Mahyco. The enthusiasm of students, and the eagerness with which they asked questions about sowing, harvesting and use of technology was heart-warming. It displayed their genuine interest in understanding the science behind the food they eat. One student from Golden Jubilee School, Jalna left the farms saying that she was determined to work in agriculture field and make a difference. I request you to please see her video here on our Facebook Page.
Farmers joined us with more ideas, and after getting a more in-depth understanding of the challenges they faced, we got fresh perspective as well. We also took this opportunity to share with them simple techniques to make their fields more effective by applying science and precision farming. It was encouraging to see their feedback and requests for more options of hybrid seeds in more crops. Conversations revolved around quality testing, detailed information about our varieties in gourd, cabbage, okra, cotton and many more.
The highlight of the event was ofcourse a live kitchen where ladies from the nearby villages served fresh wheat chapatis using flour produced by planting our wheat research variety ‘TARAK’. The chapatis were welcomed and loved by all present. They appreciated the fine quality and thin texture which made the chapatis more tasty than ever!
During a panel discussion with farmers, breeders and scientists, we saw farmers coming out with full force to suggest the immediate need for support from Government so that technology and science are encouraged and more varieties of biotech seeds are introduced to the market. I met a farmer who said there not enough technologies in agriculture and we could not feed a population of 120 million. Today, with a population of 1.2 billion, how can farmers be expected to go back in time and grow food without science?!
The 3 days were concluded with a special felicitation ceremony of 100 farmers who have been progressive in their mindset and encouraging of innovation in agriculture- because we truly believe in it as well.
Mahyco Innovation Day may have ended, but the learnings and conversations left a deep impact on all of us. They gave us new direction and drive. When we returned to our offices after the event, one could feel new excitement and energy in the office.