Hyderabad, May 26, 2018: A two day meeting on Future of Farming kicked off here in the city on Saturday at Hotel Park Hyatt, Banjara Hills.
It was an industry initiative of Valagro, a global leader in the field of biostimulants and other specialty nutrients for plants, which has always put the best of its innovation and research at the service of farmers worldwide, helping them "do more with less."
Valagro India has base at Hyderabad and operates in India out of Hyderabad.
Dr.Prem Warrier, COO, Valagro Group; Dr.Raman Ramachandran, CMD of BASF India Ltd; Mr.Lucas Fornara, India Country Manager, Valagro andDr. Alberto Piaggesti, Director, R&D, Valagro Headquarters graced the inaugural function of the meet and spoke on the occasion.
Speaking on the occasion, Dr.Prem Warrier. a Doctorate in Plant Pathology/Nematology, an agricultural scientist and who has to his credit 30 patents and 50 pending spoke on the Challenge of the Future Farming. World Population is expected to touch 9.8 billion in 2050. Global food production must increase 79 per cent by 2050 to meet the future needs. The annual cereal production must rise by 42 & beef production 100%. There will be a 19% increase of agricultural water consumption by 2050. We Need to produce 70% more food, 50% more water and 30 to 40% energy. by the year 2050. But, the agricultural productivity will slow to 1.7%. We need US $ 84 billion in investment to meet the growing needs.
Not only the world population growing by leaps and bounds, the longevity of the people is increasing. So need to feed more people. That means we need to produce more food. And that is the big challenge to the farming community in the world. Across the world, agricultural producers feel the need to produce more abundant and better quality crops while using less water, land and technical inputs.
In the complex context of the effects of climate change, scarcity of fundamental resources and low land yields, how can agriculture constantly become more productive and efficient to produce additional food for an ever-growing world population in a sustainable way?
To answer this question, Valagro launched Valagro for Future Farming, an initiative to show its commitment to building tomorrow.'
The constraints for food security, Dr. Prem Warrier added are: Abiotic factors like Drought, salinity; biotic factors like insects, bacteria; market logistics like Weak market linkages, poor distribution; Weak Policies. The Global Business trend favoring agriculture in developed countries he informed.
But India has plenty resources to be happy about. But, India, one of the fastest growing economies, has one of highest poverty prevalence in the world and is home to approx. 40% of the world’s poor.
Only 20 per cent of population in the world contributes to agriculture. No life is possible without agriculture.
We cannot live without chemicals. However, we can reduce the use of the same. Customise use of chemicals, he told the industry. Biostimulants which increase the efficiency of the crops is the future. Valagro is 20 product, Italy based company has a turnover of 150 million US $, he informed. We are a Biological Natural Product Company, he stated.
How do we feed the world sustainably? he asked and added by increasing productivity; reducing waste in food value chain; consuming more sustainable diets, he informed.
Future farms will be small and smart. The climate change is affecting farmers productivity. The world needs a paradigm shift in sustainable Agriculture by way of Innovation, Inclusion and Incentives, he added. Future belongs to biological products like Inoculants, PGPR, Biopesticides and Biostimulants, he added.
Quoting Dr. Swaminathan, Dr. Prem said, “If Agriculture goes wrong, nothing will go right”. Agriculture is foundation to what we do he added.
Addressing the 250 plus gathering Dr. Raman Ramachandran, Chairman, BASF INDIA who was the Chief Guest spoke about Sustainable Agricultural Solutions: Challenges and Opportunities for the agricultural industry in India. Innovation is important he stated. Feeding more than a billion is challenge because of the low productivity; shrinking land holdings; poor farm economy, impact of climate change and others, he said.
By 2020, the government of India has promised to double the income of the farmers. But, not much progress happened in this direction, he added.
If you study the Mansoon Data of the past 100 years, there was a drought for two years in every ten years, he informed.
Dr. Raman told agri sector to innovate to over challenge. Innovate to grow more; innovate to reduce losses; innovate through IT; Innovate through Science. Do agriculture responsibly, he stated.
Last year Rs 98000crore worth agricultural and horticultural produce was lost due to inadequate storage, he stated.
The event was organised as part of the global Valagro for Future Farming project, under which the company intends to promote and strengthen its commitment to the main reference markets to shape the agriculture of tomorrow by developing and supplying increasingly innovative and sustainable solutions and technologies.
250 distributors, farmers and technology leaders in addition to hosting experts from the several accredited Indian academic institutions gathered at the two day meet to share scenarios and perspectives on the context of Indian agriculture.
"Doing more with less" is also an unavoidable challenge for Indian agriculture, which is being called on to respond to the food demands of one of the countries with the most numerous – and constantly increasing – populations.
Valagro’s unique approach to ensuring productivity rests upon its uniquely innovative GeaPower technology platform based on a continuous commitment to innovation, sustainability and customized solutions. This approach is based on the integrated offer of solutions that range from products for sustainable crop nutrition (micro-nutrients and water-soluble fertilisers) to biologicals, which include biostimulants – that can cope with abiotic stress and improve crop quality – and micro-organism-based solutions.
These topics addressed by the main speakers at the convention, who include Luca Fornara (Country Manager of the Valagro subsidiary in India), alongside experts from the National Institute of Abiotic Stress Management (NIASM), the Indian Institute of Horticultural Research (IIHR) and the Tamil Nadu Agricultural University (TNAU).
Luca Fornara, Country Manager of the Valagro subsidiary in India said: "As a portal to the agricultural opportunities in Asia, the Indian sub-continent is one of the most important and strategic areas in which Valagro intends to grow and strengthen its commercial presence. Organising the event here in Hyderabad, where the offices of the Valagro subsidiary in India is located, gives us the opportunity to illustrate how Valagro can ensure greater efficiency in agriculture, increasing the quantity and quality of production, ".