The Agri Clinic and Agri Business Centre scheme of the Centre has helped in training more than 71,000 agri and science graduates in the country, according to P Chandra Shekar, Director General of National Institute of Agricultural Marketing (NIAM), Jaipur.

Speaking at a webinar on ‘Business ideas for start-ups in agriculture’, organised by the Atal Incubation Centre of Nitte Education Trust, he said that more than 28,000 agri-entrepreneurs have established their ventures in 32 different categories after being trained under the scheme.

This 45-day free residential training programme offers hand-holding for a year. A start-up loan of up to ₹20 lakh is extended under this scheme.

He said one of the persons from Assam, who was trained under this scheme, has his own venture in agri tourism. He is also promoting organic farming in his State. His venture has helped create around 40 jobs. This agri entrepreneur has an annual turnover of around ₹3 crore, he said.

Referring to the activities of NIAM, he said his institute has supported 59 agri start-ups in the last one year through training and other means.

A win-win situation

To a query on the role of agri start-ups in the Farmer Producer Organisations (FPOs), he said the combination of start-ups and FPOs can do wonders in a given sector. It will be a win-win situation for both the start-up and FPO, he said.

Ashok Alur, Director of Centre of Excellence in FPOs, Karnataka Government, said that around 60 per cent of agri start-ups in the country are in the seed stage. He said around 9 per cent of the agri start-ups have reached the growth stage. Maximum number of agri start-ups are situated in the two States of Maharashtra and Karnataka.

He also highlighted the potential areas for growth in agri start-ups on the occasion.