Bengaluru-based Ninjacart, India’s largest B2B fresh produce supply chain company, furthered its vision of ‘Safe food for billion people’ with its first set of residue-free tomatoes, produced in partnership with agri-tech platform Kilofarms. This batch has been tested and cleared by Shriram Institute for Industrial Research, Bangalore, and also meets the 2013-14 National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD) testing list criteria to be safely tagged as residue-free consumable produce.
With a purpose to impact billions of their end consumers in meaningful ways, Ninjacart, along with its associate partner Kilofarms, is optimistic in cultivating eight more crops that will be residue-free, including muskmelon, watermelon, chilies, potatoes, ridge gourd, ladyfinger by February 2021, and 18 more crops by mid of next year, the company mentioned in a press statement.
Residue-free vegetables are grown with optimal farm inputs that do not contain any harmful chemicals and are not necessarily organic. Residue-free farming is safe, scalable, and affordable and can unlock safe food for billions of people. Residue-free vegetables and fruits are exported from India, but these methods were not being utilized to the fullest potential for local consumers. While organic food production has been given more emphasis till now, the input costs are quite high and are not economical or scalable for farmers. Ninjacart and Kilofarms have leveraged each other’s strengths to devise tech-enabled methods such as automated drip irrigation to help farmers achieve the finest grade of fresh produce through residue-free methods.
According to Ninjacart, this technology will help farmers with moisture sensors that give a predictive estimate of the soil’s water content as it influences the yield of the crop. It helps reduce the amount of water used in the field by telling the farmers which part of the field has less water, thereby bringing more efficiency to the entire process with minimal wastage. This entire system is controlled through an app wherein farmers can look after 30 to 40 acres of land in a single day without spending the entire day in the field.
Moreover, this new method’s production cost is almost at par with the conventional style of farming, where there is only a slight variation of Rs 1 on one kg more in average production cost in residue-free farming. The next step is to make residue-free farming scalable by the end of February 2021.
Thirukumaran Nagarajan, co-founder, and chief executive officer, Ninjacart, while announcing the first set of successful residue-free vegetables, said, “Ninjacart’s ambition since inception has been to ensure safe food for all, and with the introduction of our first residue-free produce we have come closer to that dream. We are extremely happy with what we have been able to accomplish and are excited to continue this journey with Kilofarms. Combining our knowledge of the supply chain ecosystem with their technology prowess, we will continue to stay steadfast in our goal and expand these methods to even more crops by next summer.”
Jerome Jesuraja Arokiasamy, co-founder and chief executive officer at KiloFarms, said, “We are happy to have partnered with Ninjacart in their vision to ensure safe food to billions of people. Ninjacart’s experience and our tech enabled solution, together has helped us to produce the first residue-free batch of tomatoes. We are excited to replicate the solution for other fresh produce and normalize residue-free produce in the market and among consumers.”
This year, Ninjacart introduced FoodPrint, a complete food traceability infrastructure that captures the end-to-end footprint traceability of fruits and vegetables that moves from farm to home. FoodPrint traces the produce right from the farm with information related to the farmer, when it was harvested, the truck that carried the produce, the warehouse that processed it, the helper who handled the product at the warehouse, the retailer who brought the product, and how it was delivered at the consumer’s doorstep.
Ninjacart is India’s one of the largest fresh produce supply chain platform. A pioneer in solving one of the most challenging supply chain problems globally, Ninjacart leverages innovative technology to source fresh vegetables and fruits from farmers across the country and deliver them to retailers and businesses across major cities in less than 12 hours. Ninjacart’s vision is to change the way vegetables and fruits reach our plate while improving the lives of producers, businesses, and consumers in a meaningful manner.
Kilograms is an AgriTech startup that aims to help foster a community of farmers who produce the finest grade of fresh vegetables and fruits through Residue-Free methods. Their mission is to overcome the inefficiencies in traditional farming practices and standardize farm produce quality.