MSc (Agribusiness Entrepreneurship)
India is an agricultural country. Agriculture and its allied activities act as the main source of livelihood for more than 80% of the population of rural India. It provides employment to approximately 52% of labour and more than 65% of the population is engaged in agriculture directly or indirectly. Additionally, it accounts for a contribution of around 22% in Gross Domestic Product (GDP). India currently hosts over 450 agritech startups growing at 25% year-on-year in the agri-tech segment and the sector has received more than $248 million funding in the first six months of 2019. With agriculture playing such an important role in our country’s major occupation and economy, it is essential we focus on its production and management.
Though, nowadays, the agriculture sector is facing tough challenges like constantly changing environment, factors relating to requirements and creation of complex supply-chain demands along with the integration of world markets.
85% of farmers in India have less than 5 acres of land. Out of this, more than 75% have 2 acres or even less. These farmers look for services that can help them in the efficient production and marketing of their produce. They also need detailed information on weather forecasting, scientific practices for the crops that they grow, market prices of the harvested crops at different periods of time, availability of storage space for small quantities of harvested produce in nearby locations and many more, in order to maximize their output.
But there is no provision to provide the farmers with the required information. Many of the existing schemes provided by the Government are not able to reach the last farmer because of the lack of extension personnel. What could be the solution to this? Entrepreneurship! Farmers are prepared and willing to pay a small service fee to service providers that assist them with their agricultural production. Delivery of inputs and aggregation of harvested crops, technical information for control of diseases and pests, a storage facility for the harvested crop within the village are some of the major services that can be offered to farmers. Hence there is considerable potential for entrepreneurship in this sector.
Entrepreneurship is the apt solution as India is a large country and the Government cannot reach out to all the farmers by themselves. Thus, entrepreneurs have a lot of scope to do service on a revenue model in this sector.
Talking about entrepreneurship, there has been some efforts taken by people who have set milestones. Startups in Agri-Business have started using Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning to meet customer requirements and reduce wastage in the supply chain.
India is on the verge of a revolution in agribusiness with a lot of startups emerging in this sector as well. Thus, there is immense scope in this field and the youth of our country should be ready to take up entrepreneurship rather than become job seekers.
Due to the constantly changing agribusiness environment, there is a need and requirement for agribusiness managers and decision-makers to make complex and correct decisions after responding to these changing markets and policies. The aim of this program is to educate and prepare students to take charge of leading change in the industry.
Within the course, the students will be taken to entrepreneurs project sites to show them some of the enterprises functioning successfully. Successful entrepreneurs will share their experiences as well as the challenges they have faced in taking up their enterprise. Besides, there will be seminars organized within the school in which the students will be encouraged to take part. Adjacently they will be provided with opportunities to participate in seminars organized elsewhere. The students will be encouraged to network with other entrepreneurs to widen their knowledge.
After the course, the students can think of agribusiness enterprises which are simple and revenue-based and which will help the small farmers to a large extent.
While the School will help connect students with other Agri incubation centers and funding agencies around the country, the School would be establishing an Agri Incubation center of its own in due course which will help the students identify activities for taking up entrepreneurship and nurture entrepreneurs.
The Government of India, as well as State governments, have various startup programs that have both funding elements as well as incubation facilities which will be made known to the students during the course.