Bayer, a global enterprise with core competencies in the life science fields of healthcare and agriculture, announced the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) in India with ADM, a global leader in sustainable human and animal nutrition. The partnership will enhance sustainable value offerings to soybean farmers in the Latur, Osmanabad & Beed districts of Maharashtra and expand further to Karnataka, subsequently.
In India, ADM's principal business is processing of oilseeds into edible oils, animal feeds and feed ingredients and human nutrition ingredients. ADM has a large network of farmers in the states of Maharashtra and Karnataka, through Krishi Vikas Kendras' (KVK) network of 50+ crop-development and procurement centers. The centers are staffed by agronomists who offer local farmers training in best agricultural practices, as well as procurement services. ADM's Sustainability Program creates opportunities for small landholding farmers to get training in socioeconomic and environmental sustainability principles and third-party audits, through the European organization, ProTerra Foundation.
Bayer aims to reach twenty-five thousand soybean farmers in ADM's network in the first year. During the period, Bayer will provide a specialized schedule of crop management prepared in consultation with ADM and agricultural universities for all the crops in the working area as and when required. It will also develop a crop protection package for all crops of soybean & pulses by providing legally permitted, non-hazardous crop protection chemicals as allowed under sustainable crop production principles. ADM will provide Bayer with details regarding the partner farmers & area of operations. Bayer will follow a Seed to Market approach with the inclusion of sustainability elements such as complete package promotion of seed treatment, pesticides, and agronomic advisory along with Integrated Pest Management (IPM) practices. It will also demonstrate good agricultural practices on demo plots & conduct field visits for extending practical experience to farmers. The MoU will be valid for a period of three years.
Speaking on the partnership, Simon-Thorsten Wiebusch, Country Divisional head - Crop Science Division of Bayer for India, Bangladesh & Sri Lanka, said, "In contrast to cereal production, India is far from self-sufficient in edible oil production, importing nearly 60% of its domestic edible oil requirement. Increasing the yield of soybean cultivation sustainably is essential to reduce import dependency and increase the income for soybean farmers to increase the attractiveness of the crop. We are thankful to ADM for their willingness to be a part of creating a holistic ecosystem that will help improve smallholder farmer incomes by sustainably enhancing their soybean yield through the right market linkages and helping India achieve self-sufficiency."
Speaking on the same, Amrendra Mishra, managing director Oilseeds Country Manager India, said, "This partnership is aimed at training the farmers to adapt responsible agricultural practices and progressively enhance the level of compliance to sustainable standards of agricultural production. Together, Bayer and ADM are making a tangible, positive impact at the field level by partnering with farmers to not only focus on environmental security, but also on food security."
Regular training will be provided to the ADM cluster agronomist team in soybean markets on complete crop cultivation practices such as nutrition & pesticide schedules, BayG.A.P and Proterra principle (train the trainer) training. ADM will help Bayer put in place an input supply mechanism for their member farmers. It will further ensure that the partner farmers are using the crop protection inputs as per expert recommendations of the Bayer team. Seed Treatment training will also be provided through Bayer Roller Mixer machines at the sowing time following all safety protocols.