A Solution To Stubble Farming; To The Farmer, For The Farmer, By The Farmer
Stubble burning was always a problem for government because of its highly polluting nature. Although the farmers found it easy and cheap method to get rid of unwanted stubble covering their plot, it was also leading to reduced fertility of soil which was the cause of lesser yield per unit area. So, there was a need to resolve it faster. That’s when two farmers from Ludhiyana, Punjab proposed a solution with potential to solve this problem and also added a little extra to every farmer's pockets.
Alternative and effective method
Sukhbir Dhaliwal and Kamaljeet Singh found a way to convert crop residue into bio-coal which not only saved the environment from adverse effects of stubble burning but also proved to be an excellent fuel. With a finding so incredible they built a start-up named Farm2Energy in Simartala, Punjab based on crop residue management in 2016. This method was potent enough to create a whole new industry. They first tested this bio-coal in 2016 by selling it to biomass and cement manufacturing plants and managed to get over 30 lakh rupees out of this deal. The results were a major kick to their start-up.
“It is a new industry, which has a huge potential, apart from making the environment clean and green,” says Sukhbir.
Right on track
Because the banks didn’t allow them loan due to cloudy policy on granting loan for agricultural equipment, they had to rely on their friends from Ludhiyana for funds. Till now their idea has shown promising results. They also got support from the farmers of Ludhiyana as they too got benefited by getting their lands freed from stubble at absolutely zero charge. They are mainly using paddy, corn and sugarcane stubble to produce bio-coal and have cleared more than 12,000 acres of land till now.
“We are clearing the fields free of cost and hence the farmers are facing no hassles in sowing next crop,” says Sukhbir.
Expecting it to reach further
They have planned to extend the reach of their product and are trying to bid for National Thermal Power Corporation (NTPC) for the same. Recently, they have also sent two tonnes of bio-coal sample to Europe for testing in thermal power plants there. This start-up will prove to be highly beneficial in protecting the fertility of land and also reduce the manual involvement in clearing the land to enable it for farming again.
#Innovation #Technology #Agriculture #Punjab
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