Agriculture being the backbone of Indian economy demands a strong research backed seed distribution. The Indian market of seeds is not stable currently mainly due to the arrival of new products but is projected to grow at CAGR of 6.8 per cent till 2025. The market is highly competitive with better chances of survival for enterprises that have innovative intent and ability to provide a product as per the expectations of farmers. Namdeo Umaji Agritech started from a small shop at Byculla, Mumbai in 1885 and is currently a renowned brand in the international market. It is also recognized as the oldest functioning seed company in India.
Shlok Bhalinge, Director of Namdeo Umaji says, “We are pioneers in the distribution of vegetable seeds and were one of the first companies to bring hybrid vegetable seeds in India in 1991. In 2001, we initiated our own seed brand under the name of Pyramid Seeds. The differentiating factor for the company is its approach of evolving in accordance with the necessities of the Indian market mainly including adaptability of
biotechnology and modern plant breeding techniques being the latest trendsetter in agriculture.”
Meeting Consumer Expectations
Namdeo Umaji offers vegetable seeds, herbs and f lower seeds and they are not exactly in field crops for example of rice, paddy. Shlok adds, “We have a DSIR - registered Research & Development centre. We continue doing our market research and at the same time breed our own varieties, by which we can transform the market and introduce newer and better crop varieties to the Indian market. The newer varieties include a higher yield and disease tolerance for farmers to ensure the farmer's gain throughout the season.
We collect germplasm from all over the world and use our R&D facility to develop better products for the Indian market, keeping in mind the adaptability to climatic variation, soil texture, and the consumer demand. This helps the farmers in ensuring the quality of the crops in terms of colour, shape, size, nutritional content etc. depending upon the type of crop. Our company is focused on developing and researching on the next product that the market needs by applying our decades of experience in the agriculture industry.”
Ensuring Long-term Gains for Farmers
Namdeo Umaji has a great team of sales and marketing that works on fostering farmer relationships. The company scrutinises and resolves each of its consumers issues through ground-level assistance from regional sales representatives. Shlok says, “I did my Bachelors and am pursuing Masters from UC Davis which is the No.1 agricultural university across the globe. I did lot of internships and gained 2-3 years of working experience in company. My elder brother is the founder of Ugaoo.com which is a website with A-Z Gardening requirements along with all our expertise and seeds in its product profile. He is responsible for the urban market mainly the seeds, organic farming, terrace farming.”
Namdeo Umaji is now tapping into various markets across the globe and is focused on R&D of multiple newer varieties in Chillies, Tomatoes, Melons, and Cucumbers. Shlok concludes, “Nowadays, the customer is inquisitive about the nutritional content of the product. We would be focusing on the healthier aspects of our products that have a higher nutritional value, including different types of vitamins, fiber, and other antioxidants. We are trying to take our research very deep in the product profile and look beyond only its qualitative aspects, like shape, colour, etc.”