Budget 2023: Why the Agriculture Accelerator Fund is a Good Idea
Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman has announced the creation of an Agriculture Accelerator Fund in the latest budget. This fund would seek to fast- track agricultural entrepreneurial activity in a country where a little less than half the workforce is employed in agriculture which brings in about 18 per cent of GDP (gross domestic product).
Agricultural startups in India have been gaining immense popularity in recent years as they aim to modernize and improve the traditional agricultural sector in the country. The majority of the farmers in India are small and marginal, and the agricultural sector faces challenges such as low productivity, inadequate infrastructure, and limited access to technology and financing. These startups are tackling such issues and transforming the agricultural sector in India.
The startups, part of India’s wider startup ecosystem which is third largest in the world, have created a movement around the country of customers seeking authentic farm-to-fork products that utilise swift digital-empowered delivery from producer to consumer.
One of the primary objectives of these startups is to increase the productivity and efficiency of Indian agriculture. They use innovative technologies like precision farming, smart irrigation systems, and weather-based advisory services to optimize crop yield and minimize wastage. These technologies help farmers make informed decisions regarding seed selection, fertilizer application, and pest management. They also provide real-time data and insights to farmers, enabling them to make informed decisions about their crops.
Another significant challenge faced by farmers in India is the lack of access to credit and financing. Agricultural startups in India are helping farmers overcome this issue by providing them with access to financial services and products like microfinance and crop insurance. These financial services allow farmers to invest in their operations and mitigate the risk of crop failure due to natural calamities or other factors.
Additionally, agricultural startups in India are working to improve the supply chain and logistics of the agricultural sector. They are using technology to streamline the distribution of agricultural produce and reduce the number of intermediaries involved in the supply chain. This helps to ensure that farmers receive a fair price for their produce and reduces the post-harvest losses that are common in the traditional agricultural sector.
Therefore, an Agriculture Accelerator Fund would empower many more such agri-startups who would play a crucial role in transforming the traditional
agricultural sector and helping farmers better income. These startups are using innovative technologies, financial services, and improved supply chain systems to improve the efficiency and profitability of Indian agriculture. With their continued growth and expansion, the agricultural sector in India has the potential to become one of the leading agricultural producers in the world, providing numerous economic and social benefits to the country and its people.