Jun. 17, 2022
UPL, an agriculture products and solutions company, is planning to double its biosolutions business in India over the next couple of years.
Globally, biosolutions is a Rs 4,000 crore business and in India, this is a Rs 400 crore business. This is part of the shift in the company’s business model to sustainable agriculture. The company has plans to launch 30 new products in the next 24 months.
Jai Shroff, CEO, UPL, said, sustainability is top priority for them and they want to make farmers more resilient and improve farm productivity as well as profitability. The biggest challenge agriculture was facing was climate change with water shortage and heat waves, which was hugely impacting farmers, Shroff said.
The company was committed to making agri practices more sustainable and UPL was working towards creating sustainable technologies and platforms that would change the way the industry worked, he said.
As part of these initiatives, UPL announced the commercial launch of their patented Zeba Technology for sugarcane farmers. According to Shroff the Zeba Technology would lead to a 20% savings in water and reduce the use of fertilisers which would reduce the overall costs for the farmer and improve their production and income. The sugarcane crop requires the major consumption of resources like water, inputs, electricity, labor, and fuel. Despite high consumption, the return on investment to each stakeholder is low with a poor yield.
The company had been working on several pilots with farmers and they had seen savings of 600 crore litre of water and 500 MT urea of fertilisers while increasing yield by 15% over 10,000 acres of land through optimum utilisation of natural resources and use of the Zeba Technolgy.
UPL signed an MoU with Shreenath Mhaskoba Sugar Mill in Pune on Tuesday for a sustainable sugarcane production programme and reach 4,000 farmers in 70 villages. Shroff said they were talking to five to six sugar mills and hoped to add them to the programme in the next 30 days. The target was to scale up and reach a million acres in two to three years.
UPL’s Zeba is a naturally derived, starch-based, completely bio degradable and a super absorbent product. With in-furrow application, Zeba increased the water holding capacity of the soil, improved the nutrient use efficiency in the crop’s root zone.