“Agriculture is our wisest pursuit, because it will in the end contribute most to real wealth, good morals and happiness” ~ Thomas Jefferson
Since the dawn of civilization, agriculture has been considered one of the wisest and noblest pursuits of men. Natural farming allows even the smallest and poorest of farmers to practice agriculture with minimal capital cost, minimal water usage and grow chemical-free food. That’s what makes farming sustainable. In today’s age of cutting-edge technology, farming has undergone a sea change. However the essence remains the same.
Launched in January 1993 by Ranjit Patil and Nina Patil, Umrani Farms is a leading supplier of Grapes, Raisins, and other Indian Fresh Produce to premium retailers across India and Europe. They are Fairtrade certified grower-exporters with their own family-owned farms where they grow organic, wellness products such as Sorghum/Jowar, Maize, Moringa and Black Urad, all of which are also used to make bio – pesticides and organic manures of plant origin in Natural Farming.
Sowing the seeds of change
The story began 26 years ago. The newly-wed couple Ranjit ( MBA , International Business ) and Nina ( Masters in Social Work ) wondered how they could add value to a family hobby, (rather than a cash crop), of growing grapes conventionally for the local market. They noticed how the conventional practice of growing grapes needed a lot of expensive chemicals and huge debts the farmers were incurring due to this. This made them visit and research how other countries succeed on the world market and confidence that growing “poison free” grapes is possible without burning a hole in the pocket of small farmers.
Ranjit’s father, then just retired from Maharashtra, Irrigation Department, stood firmly behind the couple as they took up the challenge of converting a drought prone area in Western Maharashtra into green, lush vineyards, along with the local women, as most men had migrated to urban areas in search of jobs. Today, a green revolution has taken place as the entire dry landscape has been converted into mini vineyards. Most of the women who started off on Umrani Farms ( and continue to do so ), have gone ahead and erected their own farms with technical assistance and through Natural Farming, which is widely propagated by the couple.
Umrani Farms : Modern-day take on farming
Umrani Farms is a name that has earned respect and trust of its consumers through decades of hard work. The motto is to serve “Quality without Compromise” through Innovation, Trust & Transparency. It’s known to deliver the best of quality using sustainable Natural Farming and cutting-edge Agri technology as per, industry-leading food-safety and traceability standards.
The products, most of which are internationally certified, are mainly sun-dried and chemical-free as the farm uses locally grown plants to make bio pesticides and organic manures to ensure 100% natural farming. Here sulphur bleaching, polishing , any process which drains away nutrition content of the produce, is a big no-no, so raisins are kept naturally dark brown and black and grains are at their au natural best.
Sustaining future goals
The brand UniGrape is much sought-after in international markets. Since the last couple of years it’s natural, sun dried raisins are making a mark and the focus is on increasing the range of wellness products through natural farming.
Umrani Farms understands its social responsibility and believes in creating a positive influence on the world that goes beyond the calculation of profit-and-loss. In this regard, the brand organises widespread awareness campaigns and R&D sessions for promoting agriculture among today’s generation.
Signing off, the Umrani team says “We are confident you will taste the earthy sunshine and abundance of nature and positivity we put into our products.”
To know more visit – http://bit.ly/umranifarms
Visit their e-commerce website – www.umranifarms.in
Instagram – https://www.instagram.com/umranifarms/
To read more Startup Stories on The Business Press visit – https://thebusinesspress.in/category/startup-stories/