India, 15th June 2023: Godrej Agrovet Limited’s (GAVL) Crop Protection Business today announced that its biostimulant, Double, has completed 25 years of enabling better yield for Indian farmers. Double has treated ~3 Crore acres of Indian farmland and brought prosperity to the lives of ~2 Crore farming families over the last 25 years. The company also launched a celebratory pack marking 25 years of Double and its commitment to better farming in addition to protecting farmers from counterfeit products.
Double’s new pack is user-friendly and comes in a safe packaging bottle. It has a tamper-evident seal that blasts open and falls when anyone tries to open the bottle. The label has complex watermarks to avoid duplication and the bottle also has a hologram – a unique 9-digit code on each and every bottle to ensure authenticity. While the hologram also has the smartly embedded letter ‘G’ to assure the customer that the product is genuine, a ‘Braille’ marking on the neck reading danger has also been added for the visually impaired.
Double, a biostimulant, reduces flower drops and fruit shedding in cotton, soybean, groundnut and vegetable (tomato) crops. Flower drops and fruit shedding impact farmers’ yield by 15%-25%. Proper farming practices, coupled with the right dosage of Double, can aid farmers in increasing their yield. In Cotton, Double aids in better fertilization, thereby enabling better seed setting (a key developmental stage in the process of seed formation) and stronger pod (a rounded mature fruit) foundation. On average, two applications of Double aid in enhancing yield by 18%-20%. Similar application of Double on Soybean and Groundnut crops helps the crop overcome the fertilization barriers, reduces flower dropping, and improves pod setting resulting in increase in yield by 30%-35% and 10%-12% respectively. For Tomato, it helps improve the viability of the pollen and improves flower-to-fruit conversion, resulting in reduced flower dropping and more fruits per plant, uniform size, color and improved fruit weight by 15%-18% depending on the crop.
Commenting on 25 years of Double, Balram Singh Yadav, Managing Director, GAVL said, “Double was launched with an objective to help farmers increase yield of their crops. Since its inception, we have touched the lives of ~2 Crore Indian farmers and have witnessed an average 18% increase in yield and hence income of our Indian farmers. We are confident that a product like Double, if used in proper quantity and at right time, would aid farmers to further enhance their yield and income in addition to ensuring food security of our nation.”
GAVL started working extensively on Homobrassinolide (HBR), a raw material for Double, in 1992. Witnessing its role in improving cell division and cell elongation in crops, the company launched Double in 1998, enabling farmers to leverage its benefits. In addition to reducing flower drop and fruit shedding, a biostimulant like Double also aids in enhancing a crop’s ability to withstand biotic and abiotic stresses.
Abiotic stress includes temperature, ultraviolet radiation, salinity, floods, drought etc, which impacts crop plants while biotic stress refers to damage caused by insects, herbivores, fungi, bacteria or weeds.
Burjis Godrej, Executive Director, GAVL highlighting the importance of biostimulants said, “70% of yield gap globally is dictated by climate change. In India too, soaring temperature and erratic rainfall continue to impact crop yield and favor weed & pest proliferation. It is under such unfavorable conditions that biostimulants aid in enhancing the yield of the crops. The global and Indian biostimulant market is expected to grow at a CAGR of 11.8% and 12.5% respectively by 2031. Hence, as the world’s largest producer of HBR, we at GAVL will continue serving Indian farmers by offering different biostimulants as per their crop requirement.”
India is one of among the few countries around the world to define separate regulations for biostimulants. With the unorganized biochemical sector, worth ~INR 1,640 Cr, being one of the fastest growing subsectors, the guidelines released in 2021 mandates manufacturers to label the products to include chemical composition and expiry date, as well as mandatory prior registration with the government.
Commenting on the importance of regulation, Rajavelu N.K, CEO, Crop Protection Business, GAVL said, “A farmer invests in a crop protection product with a hope of achieving optimum yield from their crop. With 85% of Indian farmers being small and marginalized, it is imperative to provide them a quality product which is genuine and easy to use. Hence, while setting up the regulation is a first step, there is a need for industry-wide collaboration to create awareness amongst the farmers by educating them on the benefits surrounding usage of authentic product in appropriate and recommended quantity.”
The new packaging of Double is aligned to the guidelines laid down by the government and is convenient to use.
The climate crisis has cost India 5 million hectares of crops in 2021. With pest & diseases and poor agricultural practice impacting the yield too, GAVL believes that it is the need of the hour for the industry to create awareness around Crop Protection – utilizing Right Product at the Right Time & Right Spray – and the importance of Biostimulants along with Integrated Pest Management.