Bayer, a global enterprise with core competencies in the life science fields of healthcare and agriculture, announced its plan to scale up its Sahbhaagi program to empower rural women and youth with an aim to develop a comprehensive agricultural ecosystem.
The ‘Bayer Sahbhaagi Program’ was launched in 2019 and today the program has more than 4000 Sahbhaagis across India. This initiative creates unique opportunities for rural entrepreneurs to partner with Bayer, explore alternate demand generation routes and enhance Bayer’s reach to farmers.
Sahbhaagi is a rural micro-entrepreneurship development model which empowers farmers, women and rural youth to become an advisor and recommend right solutions to smallholder growers. The scale-up of the Sahbhaagi program will include adding more Sahbhaagi partners to create a strong network of outreach and engagement with farmers across India, and anyone above the age of 18 with knowledge of agriculture and access to a smartphone is eligible to become a Sahbhaagi.
In addition to enrolling young Agri-entrepreneurs, Bayer understands the major role women play in shaping their families and the agriculture value chain. Their role as influencers in buying decisions makes them the perfect partners to scale up the program.
The program will be further fueled by the adoption of smartphones and evolving digital technologies that have created new touchpoints with farmers. The Sahbhaagis have been trained and equipped to recommend the right solutions to smallholder farmers as per local farm conditions.
The smallholder growers get access to Bayer products digitally with the assistance of the Sahbhaagi This program is currently active in 24 states, across more than 470 districts and 1980 sub-districts.
Speaking about the program, Simon-Thorsten Wiebusch, Country Divisional Head – Crop Science Division of Bayer for India, Bangladesh & Sri Lanka said, “In our broad effort to transform agricultural practices for the benefit of local communities, we aim to provide opportunities to micro-entrepreneurs to encourage sustainable and responsible farming and support rural productivity. Bayer will continue to work closely with these Sahbhaagis to create a sustainable ecosystem in their villages, adopting the latest agricultural and farming practices, learning the technical know-how of Bayer products and offering customized crop and product advisory to farmers.”
Bayer has also set up a toll-free number 18001204049 to provide more details to the rural population and facilitate enrollment in the Sahbhaagi program.