FORE School of Management, New Delhi in association with Institute of Urban Farming and Sustainability (IUFS), India, recently organised a seminar in a virtual platform on “Biosecurity and Agriculture”.

Dr Jitendra K Das, Director, FORE School was the Session Chair for this event, who began proceedings by taking delegates through the importance of Biosecurity and sustainable farming in the context of preservation of the planet for future generations and having effective checks and balances in place to protect against global warming, pollution, climate change, harmful biological/biochemical substances in pesticides or fertilizers.

Dr Das introduced the eminent speakers prior to the panel discussion, which included:

  • Anil Chopra, Director, Wingify
  • Karan Sikri, CEO, Sikri Farms
  • Natalia Augilar, Sustainability Consultant, Mexico

Anil Chopra shared sustainability insights from his long career working with marquee institutions such as the National Dairy Development Board, Mother Dairy, and his time at the Institute of Rural Management.

Karan Sikri, in his address, presented the practitioner perspectives, which came from running agriculture businesses. This included discussions on the benefits of several soil and water preservation techniques. The important element in the points he raised was that sustainability can be a win: win where farmers, consumers, and the planet can benefit.

Natalia Augilar quoted several instances from history across the globe that highlight the damage wrought on the environment at the hands of human activity. She stressed that it is consumers who need to drive sustainability practices at the corporations they buy from.

While topics like sustainability and biosecurity are of utmost priority across the globe and governments are extremely proactive in nature towards creating awareness, initiatives, and drafting policies, we India somehow seems to be lagging behind.

Burning example being Delhi NCR and north of India which is reeling under the worst air quality index for the past few years especially due to the noncompliance in the agriculture sector. Certain policies on agriculture and biosecurity are in place but when it comes to implementation somehow things are not the way it should have been.

The webinar brought together a variety of views from academia, farmers, activists, and consultants an important combination for fighting the sustainability battle.