Reaping what you sow: A farmer’s journey

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Ninjacart

25 Sep 2019
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I was interested in agriculture at a very young age. As a kid, I’d learn from my parents and helped them around the field as much as I could. We didn’t have much to begin with - a small piece of land and a herd of cows. I’d help feed the cows and take care of them while my parents were busy in the field. I knew that one day, I will take over from my parents, look after the farm and continue the legacy.

After I completed my 10th standard education, I decided to leave school and work full-time with my parents. We grew beans and tomatoes and supplied to Hosur and Kolar markets, which fetched us a fair amount.

Our field had no water source, so we had to borrow from other farmers to keep our produce alive. We toiled for three years and finally constructed a borewell in our land. This was my first step towards independence and it inspired me to set new goals for the business.

I expanded our land by buying from neighbouring farmers. We only had 5 Gunthas of land in the beginning, now we have 5 acres. We employ 5 daily labourers and sometimes 15 on a busy day. My wife and I work on the field every day. My parents still help me out like I did when I was younger. The entire family comes together and tends to our farm.

At one point in time, the biggest burden for me was transporting the produce to the Bangalore market. Normally, I would take the bus that leaves at 12 pm from my hometown which is in Kodihalli and this usually takes 3 hours to reach the market. This was very difficult for me as well because in case I missed the 12 o’clock bus, the next bus to Bangalore was only till 4 pm, which means the entire day would have been wasted. On any day it was almost impossible to make it back home before 10 pm. I would be so exhausted the next morning that I’d take the day off, just to rest. Moreover, vendors refused to pay more than a week later, sometimes it would even take a month to receive my payment.

I then came across Ninjacart which was 4 years ago, and after that, I have never faced any of these problems ever again. The Collection Centre team keeps me informed of the produce required for the day and I send exactly the amount required. On most days I finish all my work at the Collection Centre within 2 hours. I also get paid on the same day for which I am very grateful to Ninjacart. With all this time saved, I am able to spend more quality time with my family and also grow a variety of other vegetables in my fields.

I grow cucumbers, bajji chillies, bottle gourds, beans, and a few other vegetables on my farm. With my hard-earned money, I built a nice house for my family, got married, and have two children. My sons are studying in a good English medium school and when they grow up maybe they’ll join the family business as I did, or they’ll study and become successful on their own - we’ll just have to wait and see.

 

Narrated by Dilip Papanna, Farmer at Kodihalli