ITC Ltd has covered cumulatively more than one million acres of water-stressed areas with the company’s soil and moisture conservation program thereby hitting a new milestone, commented the chairman Sanjiv Puri.
The conglomerate has also initiated a pilot program on the efficient usage of water in agriculture to enable effective demand-side management. Puri said that this initiative has yielded water savings of 20% to 45% in crops like sugarcane, wheat, rice, and banana.
Addressing the shareholders of the company at the recently held annual general meeting, Puri said that the statistics reveal the huge potential of reducing water consumption in the agriculture sector which is a critical issue for the Indian farmers.
ITC’s large-scale integrated watershed development initiative has also led to the strengthening of the availability of water resources across 16 states.
ITC is collaborating with NITI Aayog to progressively build the capacity of two million farmers in 27 aspirational districts to help enhance rural income
The center has been stressing on water conservation and rainwater recycling to tackle the shortage of water for a long time now. The company’s newly launched initiative; ‘Baareh Mahine Hariyali’ program aligns with the government’s vision of doubling a farmer’s income.
The integrated program, which aims to multiply rural incomes through a wide spectrum of intervention, is being progressively rolled out to one million farmers. The program includes agronomic practices such as zero tillage, introduction of right varieties, cropping intensity and diversification as well as shared mechanized farming equipment.
“This pilot program covered over two lakh farmers, out of which 35,000 have already doubled their income, while others are making encouraging progress. ITC is collaborating with NITI Aayog to progressively build the capacity of two million farmers in 27 aspirational districts to help enhance rural income,” said Puri.
ITC is one of the largest private sector companies working in agriculture business and the division also provides raw material sourcing for the company’s largest non-cigarette FMCG business – packaged food.