Every day, our planet wakes with 200,000 more mouths to feed. The need to produce more food is already acute and the world’s resources are under unprecedented strain. Something needs to change. The Good Growth Plan is Syngenta’s commitment to make a measurable contribution by 2020, to help the farmers across the world rise to meet these challenges in a sustainable way. We have set ourselves specific targets related to improving resource efficiency, rejuvenating ecosystems and revitalizing rural communities.
The Good Growth Plan is a set of six commitments that we are undertaking to address the various challenges that Agriculture will face in the years to come.
The plan is particularly relevant to India as agriculture is the mainstay of the region’s economy and provides employment to more 60 per cent of its population. With India estimated to add half a billion people by 2050, farmers will have to grow crops more efficiently, conserve existing land, improve biodiversity and most importantly integrate the vast multitude of smallholders currently holding less than two hectares into the mainstream of the developmental process.
In our first year, we focused on laying the foundation for the measurement of our commitments. Based on globally consistent performance indicators and reporting processes, we have gathered our baseline data.
- Make crops more efficient: In India we have set up a network of 44 reference farms and 140 benchmark farms. These reference farms are spread over 14 states namely Punjab, Haryana, West Bengal, Uttar Pradesh, Chattisgarh, Bihar, Jharkhand, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Rajasthan, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh and Tamil Nadu. We will focus on raising productivity of five key crops- rice, cotton, corn, tomato and soybean through our integrated solutions like GroMore, Fast Start, Start Right, MaxVeg etc.
- Empower Smallholders: We reached 1.37 million smallholders through sales of specifically designed products and 0.42 million through field force activities.
- Help people stay safe: We trained 0.91 million farmers in stewardship and safe use; 0.42 million of which were smallholders
- Look after every worker: Encouraged 81% of our seed supply farms to join our Fair Labor
program which aims to address the working conditions of growers and workers on our seed production farms.
- Rescue more farmland: In 2015, we started the soil health analysis project which provides complimentary soil analysis to farmers.
- Help biodiversity flourish: We are looking at establishing projects that can benefit biodiversity on the farm.We will continue to work with partners to explore the feasibility of various Biodiversity initiatives.