Through the REVIVE Allaince, Brihati Foundation is supporting 2 batches of farmer cohorts in the state of Gujarat, by providing them with working capital through Returnable Grants as a financial instrument. The farmer cohort funded by Brihati is supported by Somnath Farmers Producer Company as an on-ground implementation partner. The grant was provided in the form of subsidized vouchers to avail agricultural inputs such as fertilizers, pesticides, seeds etc for their harvesting season.
The farmer cohort’s first batch has been completed with 100% repayment rate. The amounts recovered has now been channelised into supporting another set of farmers. Following are the challenges faced by the Farmers which fueled the need for timely working capital support:
- Being small scale farmers, each member holds between 2 to 19 acres of land which is used for crop farming or animal husbandry. They usually grow groundnut & cotton crops.
- Depending on the crop season, farmers reach out to various farmer producer organizations for the supply of agricultural inputs.
- Due to seasonality, however, most small to marginal farmers remain reliant on money lenders in their regions; to whom they end up paying very high-interest rates.
- Due to COVID-19, and recent take cyclones caused heavy disruption, leading to uncertainty of funds and high-interest rates prevailing this year
- Grant to these farmers allowed them to continue production even in times of crisis
- In the past, scenarios of high-interest costs have led to inflation of prices; a timely grant aims to mitigate such a situation.