Fair Price and Quality: Your Agriculture Products
Who knows the hardships of the farmers better than their family members? And here goes the same for the trio Anjana Shyama, Sapana Twayana, and Sanzay Byanju all coming from farming background and facing the hardships of the farmers’ life. And the story alters after that. Most of the members of the farmer do not return to help their parents (farmers), let alone all the farmers. But the trio students not only helped their parents only but have attempted to help all the farmers throughout their region to uplift their standard. They founded: Your Agricultural Product (YAP) to aid the farmers enhance their income so that they can live a prosperous life and so their family members, too. This business venture would not only help the famers, but the consumers equally as well. Here is a short conversation with the trio about their startup.
- What is “Your Agriculture Product” and how did it came up?
At the initial phase, we shared stories about our famer’s life to some people. Among many people, two people really understood our story and showed interest in visiting out farms rather than showing sympathy to farmers’ life. They visited us. Now, they are our regular customers and we directly send the vegetables to them without any intermediaries. Farmers as well as the customers got the benefit equally. Farmers got the price they deserved and customers got the cheap price as well as the qualitative agricultural products. Along with that Sapna and Sanzay had learned disintermediation and economic prosperity ideas for farmers through a youth entrepreneurship camp. After this incident we thought of commercializing the entire agricultural products with no intermediaries: Your Agriculture Product.
Your Agricultural Product is an agricultural startup company to help the farmers as well as the customers: cheap, healthy, chemical free vegetables. We help the farmers get the earning they deserve. Though the farmers are working round the clock throughout all the seasons, they are unable to fulfill the basics necessities of life to their families. And the one who reap the utmost benefits are the intermediaries. They not only cheat the famers but the customers as well. So we have come with the ideas of eliminating the intermediaries and the harmful pesticides that were used before.
- How do you make your products organic?
YAP main objective is to promote agricultural products with minimum use of pesticides at affordable cost. We use compost manure in our farm lands than chemical and pesticides. Along with that we have mitigated the use artificial nutrients, vitamins and proteins if not eradicated in our farmlands to make the vegetables look attractive, heavier, bigger, and ripen before the season. We let the vegetables grow in a natural way.
Currently, we are focusing on seasonal vegetables Cucumber, Beans, Bitter gourds, Cauliflower as the demand for them is high and it can be more profitable for us. Moreover, the climate, too is best suited for vegetable farming in our areas which do not require any artificial nutrients, vitamins and proteins.
- What are the challenges you have faced so far?
Firstly, it is very challenging to be completely organic in a country like Nepal where almost every land and water is polluted. Due to the polluted land and water, the vegetable cannot grow in natural way now which has propelled us to chemicals in farmlands. Though we in comparison in other farmlands we have reduced the use of chemical fertilizer in a dramatic way.
Similarly, the transpiration is the major obstacles in our venture. We are unable to take our products in the market as it becomes very expensive for us as we are not producing in bulk amount. We attempted to sell our products to the small vendors as well but the same problem stuck us- lack of resources to deliver the products.
However, some customers have contacted us directly to buy vegetables and milk in bulk for household purpose. Simultaneously, online vegetables companies have approached us to buy in bulk and we are going to commence it very soon. Overall the response of our venture in market is very positive and encouraging.
- How do you plan to expand you venture in the future?
At very first, the consciousness of the people regarding the vegetables and food in overwhelming which is a very positive sign for our venture. Initially, people did not care much about the vegetables whether it is in grown in natural or artificial way. They would just consume no matter what.
In the near future, we have planned to make the maximum use of bare lands which was not used before. Along with that, we have planned about taking the land on lease. We are planning to connect more and more farmers with us so that they, too can reap the advantage and so their family members.
And the utmost significant reducing middlemen, reducing chemicals, and fair price to both parties are our priorities. We are on our way to modernize the agriculture system in terms of technology. We plan to eliminate subsistence type of farming i.e. traditional farming in the near future, too.
- What was the role of Yunus Centre in your journey?
At the early stage of the venture, we got a national level exposure that was only the through the help of the Yunus Centre. The Yunus Social Business Challenge boosted our confidence in expanding our business in the near future.
Furthermore, we got professional level mentoring and training in free of cost which have broaden our thinking of expanding our company soon in the most sustainable way.
Besides, we got monetary support (cash prize) as well which have enabled us to modernize the way of work we have been doing. It has yielded a positive encouragement not just for us but also for our parents as well as other farmers. They, too have become hopeful that their lives can be changed as well. The greatest thing- What you see depends on you how you view the world. To most people this is just dirt. To a farmer, it’s a potential, Potential to change the world.