SCMHRD won the regional round (Western region) of the NAIP (National Agricultural Innovation Project) AgriBusiness Idol Business Plan competition . The project was titled â€˜Improving Livelihoods through Producer Collectivesâ€™. The unique feature of the project was the collaboration of academia with the members of the SHG (Self-Help Group) belonging to the Rajgurunagar based NGO-Chaitanya.
Chaitanya has been at the forefront of the SHG movement in Maharashtra and works with nearly 20,000 poor rural women in the villages of Khed, Ambegaon and Junnar in the Pune District. A unit of 1000 customers in the urban areas can be catered by 300 producers and this combination can be replicated to areas of other federations across Maharashtra.
The project presented an approach that would eliminate the middlemen between the consumers and the producers/members of fresh vegetables in the value chain. The perceived advantages of such a model are :
1) Negligible wastage and loss in quality.
2) Reduced turn-around time which is beneficial for both the producers and consumers.
From a commercial aspect, the project implies better price realisation for the farmers because of reduced uncertainties.
The zonal round of the competition was organised at Symbiosis International University, Pune on 5th May 2014. Dr Rajani Gupte, VC, SIU was a guest of honour at the event. In the inaugural session of the event, Dr Pratima Sheorey, Director, SCMHRD, outlined the various AgriBusiness initiatives taken by SIU.
The team from SCMHRD comprised of Prof Raji Ajwani Ramchandani and Abhinav Dave (student 2013-15), while Chaitanya was represented by Ms Kalpana Pant and Mrs Krishnabai Karle.