"These technologies make farming sustainable"

Vijay Yelmalle had a steady career spanning 14 years in the chemical industry in Singapore. But there was something that kept tugging at him back home. “Whenever I read about farmer suicides, it depressed me. I wanted to do something for them, especially farmers from my home State, Maharashtra,” says Mr. Yelmalle.

In 2012, he ended his lucrative career and returned to India to establish the Center for Research in Alternative Farming Technologies (CRAFT). Mr. Yelmalle spent the first two years doing extensive research in technologies like hydroponics and aquaponics, which involve farming without soil. “These technologies make farming sustainable. The main reason for farmer suicide is unsustainable conventional farming,” says Mr. Yelmalle.

He began by growing vegetables on his terrace in Mumbai and giving them to his family and friends. After the success of this initiative, he began CRAFT in 2014 with four employees and a personal investment of ₹30 lakh (47,000 USD).

Read more at The Hindu (Meena R. Prashant)

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