By NIDHI SINGH
New Delhi : Only an expert gardener knows how difficult it can be to grow plants and how much extra care it takes with special attention to soil, fertilizer and light. One can’t get the process right and expect good yields without getting his/her hands dirty. But, to make their work a lot easy and convenient, many start-ups in India are working on hydroponics farming.
Hydroponics or growing plants in water or sand, rather than soil, is done using mineral nutrient solutions in a water solvent.Additionally, this indoor farming technique induces plant growth, making the process 50 per cent faster than growth in soil and the method is cost-effective. Mineral nutrient solutions are used to feed plants in water.
Here’s a list of four start-ups in India that are innovating agriculture methods and leading the way in indoor farming.
Letcetra Agritech is Goa’s first, indoor hydroponics farm, growing good quality, pesticide-free vegetables. The farm in Goa’s Mapusa is an unused shed and currently, produces over 1.5 to 2 tons of leafy vegetables like various varieties of lettuce and herbs in its 150 sq metre area. The start-up is founded by Ajay Naik, a software engineer-turned-hydroponics farmer. He gave up his IT job to help farmers in the country.
Bengaluru-based Iot and data analytics start-up BitMantis Innovation with its IoT solution GreenSAGE enables individuals and commercial growers to conveniently grow fresh herbs throughout the year. The GreenSAGE is a micro-edition kit that uses hydroponics methods for efficient use of water and nutrients. It is equipped with two trays to grow micro-greens at one’s own convenience.
Agri-tech start-up Junga FreshnGreen has joined hands with InfraCo Asia Development Pte. Ltd. (IAD) this year to develop hydroponics farming methods in India. The project started with the development of a 9.3-hectare hydroponics-based agricultural facility at Junga in Himachal Pradesh’s Shimla district.
Junga FreshnGreen is a joint venture with a leading Netherlands-based Agricultural technology company – Westlandse Project Combinatie BV (WPC) — to set up high-technology farms in India. Their goal is to create a Hydroponics model cultivating farm fresh vegetables that have a predictable quality, having little or no pesticides and unaffected by weather or soil conditions. They will be grown in a protected, greenhouse environment.
Chennai-based Future Farms develops effective and accessible farming kits to facilitate Hydroponics that preserve environment while growing cleaner, fresher and healthier produce. It focuses on being environment friendly through rooftop farming and precision agriculture. The company develops indigenous systems and solutions, made from premium, food grade materials that are efficient and affordable.