| Home | About Us | Contact Us |
Dr Rajiv Kumar Gupta IAS, MD GNFC delivers TEDx talk at IIM Bangalore about the Neem Revolution
GNFC’s Neem Project explained at TEDx IIM Bangalore
Managing Director of GNFC presented about the project’s push towards empowering women in the community by livelihood generation and economic value addition for the societal good.

Bengaluru, Sept 10: Fulfilling the vision of Hon’ble Prime Minister for 100% Neem coating of Urea, Gujarat Narmada Valley Fertilisers & Chemicals (GNFC) pioneered the innovative Neem Project that has provided livelihood to rural women and landless labourers for the last two years. For this, Neem Project was selected as a transformative idea and Dr. Rajiv Kumar Gupta (IAS), MD GNFC, was invited by the Indian Institute of Management Bangalore’s TEDx team to present it to a global audience.

TED is a platform devoted to spreading ideas in the form of short and powerful talks. TED began in 1984 as a conference where Technology, Entertainment and Design converged, and today covers almost all topics - from science to business to global issues - in more than 100 languages. Meanwhile, independently run TEDx events help share ideas in communities around the world, which bring together speakers who bring forth indigenous "ideas worth spreading". This year the theme of the TEDx IIM event was 'Transformational Ideas'. An avant-garde event, it brought to the spotlight various forward-thinking propositions and elaborated on the ingenious stratagem.

The TEDx talk by Dr. Gupta took place at the Institute Auditorium at IIM Bangalore, and was attended by around 100 faculty, researchers, students, and handpicked people from public. Dr. Raghuram G, Director of IIMB, was present, along with other dignitaries. The talk was titled as ‘Neem Revolution’ and lasted around 17 minutes. The presentation explained the genesis and peregrination of the Neem Project, and concluded by elaborating on its replicable model.

Dr.Gupta expounded on the holistic steps that GNFC has undertaken to manufacture neem coated urea and promote its agronomic benefits, while empowering rural women through backward and forward integration projects. Inspired by the Hon’ble PM’s policy mandate of Neem coating 100% Urea, Neem Project was planned and implemented. GNFC used established community structures in rural Gujarat to build linkages within its supply chain network for neem seed collection. It is proof of effective backward integration among the rural and urban poor, and has been empowering communities with targeted focus on women empowerment through income generation and improved livelihoods. Neem Project is a model to be emulated in shared value creation. The TEDx event recognizes the company’s contribution to upliftment of women and girls by developing and implementing such a transparent, sustainable and pragmatic socio-economic programme.

The project has been active in more than 5000 villages across 6 states of India. Since its inception three years ago, by collecting over 45,000MT of Neem seeds, more than INR 60 crore income has been generated for around 4.5 lakh women in 53 districts. Due to the active participation of women SHGs, Pani Samitis (Water Committees), cooperatives, NGOs, etc., it has been hailed as an example in community-led transformation by laying a strong foundation for community building and cohesion.

GNFC's approach has been lauded in the UNDP Impact Assessment Survey which concluded that there was a 58.3% increase in annual income, 120% increase in educational spending and 80% increase in health spending along with increased asset creation and decreased migration. 98% of the neem seed collectors were satisfied with the project and its impact on their livelihood. 100% were enthusiastic to take part in the skill development training programs and subsequently be a part of the neem based products’ manufacturing plants at GNFC. Above all, lives of thousands of women have been revolutionized by increasing their decision making power within family and reducing incidence of domestic violence.

The Government of India recognized Neem Project’s potential and the Ministry of Fertilizers has directed other fertilizer companies to adopt this shared value creation model. Transformative Neem Project has potential of replication throughout the country for socio-economic empowerment of more than six million women, while fulfilling the policy mandate. As of 2017-2018, Neem Project expanded to five states other than Gujarat to upscale its collection amount and income generation potential for millions of rural women. Neem Project has been awarded Porter Prize by Prof.Michael Eugene Porter from Harvard Business School, Golden Peacock Award from Sri Sri Ravi Shankar, India CSR Award by Union Minster Athawale, and SKOCH award, apart from being widely covered by print and electronic media.