India’s journey to producing food without chemicals is gaining momentum. In the last few years, governments at the Centre and a few states have been more vocal about the need to promote organic and natural farming. While plans and policies are coming up, it is on-ground implementation that determines their degree of success.
Two key issues need to be well addressed: farmers must be helped in their transition to non-chemical ways of farming, and they must have assured access to markets to sell their produce at good prices. While most ongoing initiatives focus on the transition through capacity-building and incentives, a lot needs to be done to provide better markets through a structured approach.
The key stakeholder groups involved in providing markets are farmer producer organizations, retail corporations and state governments. This compendium of six case studies—two each from three stakeholder groups carefully selected from across the country—aims to highlight how farmers have been successfully connected to consumers. The case studies focus on how organic or natural produce is procured, processed and sold through multiple channels while ensuring better prices and share to farmers, and highlight the progress, practices and challenges. The aim is to help individuals, organizations and governments learn from their journey and take it forward. Access to market must be a driver, not barrier, for India’s organic and natural farming movement.