MUMBAI -- When a new organic food venture launched in Hyderabad 12 years ago, it had a hard time convincing farmers in India to take up organic methods.
They were sceptical about the change, especially given that it takes up to four years for a farm’s soil to become free of pesticides and chemicals.
But the efforts of the company, 24 Mantra Organic, paid off, and today it works with almost 30,000 farmers and its products, ranging from lentils to spices to juices, are sold in more than 1,500 shops in India and overseas.
Organic farming is on the rise in India, with Indians demanding healthier food and the central and state governments increasingly pushing for and supporting organic farming.
There have been instances in which Indian food exports have fallen foul of international standards, which furthers the case for organic farming. Food safety inspectors in the UAE last month found potentially dangerous levels of chemicals and pesticides in some fruit and vegetable exports from India.