India pollination project ‘Madhu Sandesh’ brings home Best Stewardship Program at Prestigious Agrow Awards

SINGAPORE — With the 10th Annual Agrow Awards ceremony held in London this week, it was announced that CropLife Asia was the recipient of this year’s Best Stewardship Programme award.

Through the Madhu Sandesh (or “honeyed message”) project, farmers in the state of Maharashtra, India are provided access to rental bee hives to ensure pollination of their crops. Apart from improved yields and incomes for farmers, it has also instilled a holistic understanding of the need to use crop protection products in a manner that protects the environment, ecosystems, and human health.

The results from the effort have been impressive – with 90% of the 180 program participants reporting better quality crops by the end of the first year. Pomegranate farmers in particular saw an average of a 35% increase in their yields in concert with a 42% increase in income; while the training they received also helped reduce waste.

Farmers who benefitted from the program have also become advocates of promoting pollination, protecting the environment and using crop protection products responsibly. The program continues to enroll more participants as it moves forward in its second year.

“We are delighted and honored to receive this recognition. But, of course, it’s not about CropLife Asia – it’s about what we can do collectively as stakeholders to put farmers first. This award is a testament to the hard work and efforts of many, most notably our partners ICAR and KVK Baramati,” said Dr Siang Hee Tan, Executive Director of CropLife Asia.

“Ensuring responsible use of crop protection products while also protecting pollinators helps ensure that our food supply remains sustainable and safe. On every level, good stewardship is a shared responsibility; the Madhu Sandesh project provides a platform to enable partnership through a game-changing approach that is benefiting farmers and our environment.”

The 10th Annual Agrow Awards were organized by Informa PLC, a leading business intelligence, academic publishing, knowledge and events group.

To learn more about the Madhu Sandhesh project, please watch the video at the following link:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6QY1FOFqZo0