Shramik Krishi Sewa Kendra was one of four companies named an Ambassador of Respect at the 2018 Environmental Respect Award program sponsored by Corteva AgriScience held in early October in Washington, DC. The Maharashtra, India-based retailer was the Asia Pacific Region honoree. Following the presentation we interviewed Shramik Krishi Sewa Kendra Chairman Chairman Sahebrao Navale.
How did it feel to be named an Ambassador of Respect?
Ambassador of Respect has been one of the greatest recognitions received to our Shramik Krishi Sewa Kendra. It was proud moment for us that from the entire Asia Pacific region we have been recognized with this honor. We sincerely appreciate the work Corteva AgriScience is doing by rewarding the work done in the areas of the environment and sustainability. It has been a pleasure to be the part of the program and we really felt so motivated after the recognition.
Why are environmental respect and sustainability so important to your organization?
For our company, sustainable development means combining long-term business success with environmental protection and social responsibility. Therefore, we think of sustainable agriculture as achieving more yield from existing land, with minimum water and energy, while ensuring the profitability of farmers, caring for the environment and meeting the needs of the society.
Sustainable agriculture allows us to produce and enjoy healthy foods without compromising the ability of future generations to do the same. Insect pests threaten both livestock and high-value crops like fruits, vegetable, etc. An important strategic component to raise productivity and promote global food security is investment in pest management practices. The key to sustainable agriculture is finding the right balance between the need for food production and the preservation of environmental ecosystems.
Sustainable agriculture also promotes economic stability for farmers. Agriculture continues to be the biggest employer in the world with near about 40% of the world’s population working in it. We believe that a business can only be successful in the long term if it acts responsibly towards the environment and society. As stewards of the land, farmers are ultimately responsible for putting sustainable agriculture into practice on daily basis. We should be partner with farmers to enable them to continue growing food in an efficient and sustainable way.
We listen carefully to understand farmer experiences and concerns and respond to their needs by working with them to design the farming tools for the future. The availability of farming resources like water, land, and energy is largely dependent on regional conditions. In addition, farming or cropping systems depend on climatic factors. Diverse tools like crop protection products, fertilizers and machinery are needed to allow farmers for implementing the appropriate agricultural practices. We promote environmentally friendly products and crop solutions to the farmers to save farming resources. Hence, we feel proud to be associated with companies like Corteva. Farmers, input suppliers, agronomists government agencies and other experts need to collaborate together so that we can have sustainable agriculture. When the opportunities in the agribusiness will grow we will grow with them by catering the need of our customers and contributing to the food security of the society.
What more can your company do to promote the concept/practices of sustainability in your community?
Our company wants to deliver environmentally friendly agricultural material and provide comprehensive inputs and farmer-focused technical support to our customers. We are reaching various stakeholders via our efforts like farmers, retailers, distributors, school children, school teachers, spray operators, agriculture college students, researchers, professors, agronomists, government agriculture officers and agriculture departments, our internal employees, farmer producer organizations, key opinion leaders of villages, and various influencing political leaders.
Further, with support from government/MNC’s we have strategies to bring facilities such as soil and water testing labs for the farmers, so they can appropriately judge the quality of the resources being consumed by them. Initiatives such as exploring the export markets, so a better-quality produce can be produced from the producers and it shall also fetch them good price for their commodities. We also have focus on developing the future generations in agriculture domain with help of our colleges of agriculture, food technology and agri engineering.
We have a vision to bring knowledge regarding new trends and technologies to young generation, so they can be ambassadors for changing India and can be growth drivers for developing the agricultural landscape of India. We are passionately working on the aspects of creating awareness for MRL’s, residue, and export markets to help for export of farmers produce.
What other thoughts, if any, would you like to share on the program, the award, or the idea of environmental respect?
The program was very well organized. We really appreciate the enthusiasm of the organizers behind organizing the entire event. Also, by their efforts they have further motivated us to do more in the area of farm services.
The phrase environmental respect itself is a complete term which not just encourages us to practice sustainable agriculture, but also at the same time enlightens the need and importance of the environment for us and our future generations. Global warming is the new rising problem for environment and is already affecting agriculture. All over world people should come together to resolve this problem on the priority.