A mango farmer, J Srikanth Reddy from Karimnagar district of Telangana, has achieved the distinction of becoming the first to get his farm certified for quality as per the Good Agricultural Practices (GAP).

The farm certified under the INDGAP scheme is supported by eFresh Healthy Food Happy Life Pvt. Ltd., a subsidiary of eFresh Portal Pvt. Ltd. in Hyderabad through its Farmers Development Center at Jagtial in the district, says Srihari Kotela, Managing Director.

The basic INDGAP scheme for small and marginal farmers was launched by Quality council of India in Sept’2014 under the accreditation of National Accreditation Board for Certification Bodies with the objective of production of safe and hygiene food at the farm.

Under the scheme, the farm is inspected and certified by approved accredited agency Food Cert India Pvt. Ltd. (a 100 per cent subsidiary of TATA Projects Ltd.). As a part of the certification process, the fruit is tested for food safety for 34 chemicals.

For Srikanth, the immediate benefit has been the increase price that the Benishan or Banganapalli variety of mangoes grown in his 5.2 acre farm in Narshimulapally village, he says.

Srihari says the demand for farm fresh, carbide free and tasty varieties of Banganapalli mangoes (most popular and exported from Telangana and AP) has been growing, especially with widespread reports of the use of chemicals and carbide to preserve and give the shiny colour to the king of fruits.

The company has been marketing such varieties since the last season under the brand name 'Omang’. The organically grown variety of mangoes are procured from Karimnagar farmers cooperatives and have big demand from corporates and large IT firms in Hyderabad.