Topic 10

An evidenced-based guide with best practices for farmers and decision makers to transition to more sustainable regenerative agriculture practices

Vijayata Verma

Manager - Investments & Programs;
EdelGive Foundation - an Edelweiss Group initiative

Rohan Mukherjee

Programme Coordinator; Keystone Foundation

Bhubesh Kumar

Director-Food & Agri; Research and
Innovation Circle of Hyderabad (RICH)

Ravikanth G

Senior Fellow (Associate Professor), Suri Sehgal Centre for Biodiversity and Conservation; Ashoka Trust for Research in Ecology and the Environment (ATREE)

Kanika Thanawala

Manager - Sustainable Rural Development; A. T. E. Chandra Foundation (ATECF)

Anindita Misra

Community Member; Initiative for Climate Action (ICA)

Jyotsna ("Jyoti") Krishnakumar

Director - Community Well Being Programme (WASH); Keystone Foundation

Abhayraj Naik

Co-Founder; Initiative for Climate Action (ICA)

Ananya Mekapati

Manager; Research and Innovation Circle of Hyderabad (RICH)

Srajesh Gupta

Program Associate, Secretariat; National Coalition for Natural Farming (NCNF)

MOTIVATION

Currently India faces intensive agriculture, monocropping, subsidies, and minimum support prices coupled with a lack of information reaching farmers and consumers. We also are experiencing a lack of evidence for regenerative agriculture. These concerns have led to several economic, social, and environmental issues. These issues include a depletion of natural resources including water, soil, and forests, an erosion of traditional knowledge on indigenous crop diversity, the marginalization of communities, and negative health and nutritional insecurity.
To address these issues, we need a scalable method to promote and sustain regenerative agriculture across India that works for different communities or regions. In other words, we require evidence for biodiversity-based and climate-resilient regenerative agriculture as a solution to intensive unsustainable agriculture.

AIMS

1. Identify and compare quantifiable indicators for the economic, social, natural resource, nutrient, climate, and crop productivity between communities practicing both. natural/regenerative/organic/ traditional farming and conventional techniques.
2. Determine what constitutes a transition to regenerative farming across agricultural zones in terms of agricultural principles, market and governmental support, and behavioural change.
3. Develop promotional materials and/or policy documents for decision makers conveying the financial, social, natural resource, nutrient, climate, and crop productivity benefits of regenerative agricultural techniques.
4. Build towards an accessible toolkit for farmers and decision makers to transition to more sustainable farming practices including crop production, protection, climate and ecosystems aspects, and market or policy considerations.

IMPACT

1. Adopting best practices for regenerative agriculture can improve the health and wellbeing of our ecosystems, can improve the health of farmers and consumers through reducing chemical use, and can produce economic and social benefits if the strategies are broadly adopted.
2. Conveying tangible benefits of regenerative agriculture can increase interest, acceptance, and adoption of such practices as a viable option by farmers and decision makers.
3. This project can offer a toolkit for farmers to use in transitioning to regenerative agriculture.
4. This project can provide entry points for climate action to interface with agriculture in India.
5. Adoption of effective regenerative agricultural practices has direct climate change mitigation impacts.
6. This work can stimulate a systems-change in Indian agriculture.
7. This research can provide preliminary insights for proposing a national level program for regenerative agriculture.