Reducing vulnerability and enhancing rural livelihoods through the promotion of diversified sources of income is the focus of initiatives leading to economic development.
The key initiatives include promoting Holistic and Collective Farming practices. Farmers are being trained in organic, biodynamic and zero-budget farming practices across all our clusters.
Mushroom cultivation can help reduce vulnerability to poverty and strengthen livelihoods through the generation of a fast yielding and nutritious source of food and a reliable source of income.
Mission Samriddhi has developed the Tamil Nadu Mushroom Fund, which aims to support small and marginal farmers in Tamil Nadu.
The project at Namakkal includes setting up mushroom farms for 50 farmers and ensuring a minimum income of Rs.8,000 per month, which could scale to Rs.20,000 /month, within a year.
Our prime catalyst in this initiative is Mr Arul Thomas from SKT Agro Foods who has connected all the dots for viable mushroom farming in terms of - infrastructure, training, spawn production, mushroom production and sales/marketing.
Working with the Government machinery to receive sanction orders from the state Government for the construction of mushroom sheds as well as to receive the subsidy from the State Rural Development & Panchayat Raj Department, are important trigger points .
We have joined hands with Rang De, an online peer-to-peer lending platform that provides bridge funding for the Infrastructure development as well as for upfront working capital requirements. Social Impact Investors have contributed INR 1.5 Cr to this project through the Rang De platform, where every rupee invested goes towards providing low-cost credit to the mushroom farmers. In return, investors can earn an 8% annual return for 18 months.
This social investment not only creates an impact but also empowers farmers to enhance their livelihoods. With Rang De's track record of disbursing over Rs.50 crores in low-cost loans throughout the country, this partnership is set to power hundreds of mushroom farms in the coming years.
In Sonbhadra district of Uttar Pradesh, Banwasi Sewa Ashram, with the support of Mission Samriddhi has set up a Mushroom spawn production laboratory with technical help from ICAR- Indian Institute of Vegetable Research, Varanasi, to produce 750 kg of spawn per month. 65 farmers have been trained in a skill that will provide them an additional source of income. Encouraged by this a Farmer Interest Group (FIG) of 2500 farmers has come forward to get trained in mushroom cultivation and sell the produce under the registered company.
Promotion of Farmer Producer Organisations is an important initiative being implemented in all our clusters to collectivise farmers and support them in marketing their produce by strengthening backward and forward linkages. Mission Samriddhi, in collaboration with ISAP Foundation, has supported the formation of 10 Farmer Producer Organisations (FPOs) in Maharashtra and UP (3 in Wardha, 2 in Yavatmal, and 5 in Sonbhadra) to empower 5000 small and marginal farmers to improve their income and to get the benefit (both input and produce) of economies of scale. The main goal of this project is to increase farmers’ advantages in emerging market opportunities by providing technical assistance, marketing, processing and other aspects of farm productivity.
Agriculture tool bank is a successful model for community-managed resource sharing in rural agricultural communities. For many farmers in India, equipment is difficult to access and too expensive to buy. Smallholders can benefit most from hiring tools as needed, but standard hiring arrangements are often too costly.
With the support of Mission Samriddhi and convergence with NABARD, UMED and Gram Panchayats, 3 tool banks have been set up in 3 Gram Panchayats of Wardha district that rent out tillers, threshers, sprayers , cultivators, hoe, harrow etc. to farmers at affordable rates.
The tool banks that are run by a committee of about 7-9 women farmer members, acquire and rent out equipment at affordable rates, currently supporting 370 farmers and have individually generated net profits of up to 2.4 lakh.