Corporate Social Responsibility in Agriculture sector
As rightly said by Amartya Sen, intervention is required for the equitable distribution of wealth and improving the quality of life of the society and it must come voluntarily from the corporate houses and their top management. Thus, for a fast growing economy like India which is striding fast to become a developed country, the participation of the business houses in strengthening the economy has become indispensable.CSR is not new to India, even before CSR became a popular cause, it did exist in India. Companies like TATA and BIRLA practiced it in the form of social initiatives. In the light ...view middle of the document...
This has lead to increasing awareness of CSR and ‘the triple bottom line’ of business not only in its financial performance, but by its social and environmental impact as well.
The goal of CSR is to embrace responsibility for the company's actions and encourage a positive impact through its activities on the environment, consumers, employees, communities, stakeholders and all other members of the public sphere.
The European Commission's definition of CSR is: "A concept whereby companies integrate social and environmental concerns in their business operations and in their interaction with their stakeholders on a voluntary basis."
The concept of CSR has become more and more common in business practices and customers today almost expect companies to be socially responsible.
CSR has become increasingly prominent in the Indian corporate scenario because organisations have realised that besides growing their businesses it is also vital to build trustworthy and sustainable relationships with the community at large. This is one of the key drivers of CSR programs (Ramya Sathish,).
Most of the progressive businesses in India are realizing the importance of looking at a “Stake Holder” approach, instead of just “Share holder” approach for creating long-term respectable businesses. Many companies have integrated “Corporate Social Responsibility” policies in their work culture and many other have dedicated team focusing on activities to involve and benefit multiple stakeholders (community / environment etc).
Effective CSR strategy is an excellent way to benefit the society while creating a long-term sustainability for the business
Agriculture is the backbone of Indian Economy. Agriculture and agro-based industries account for 25 percent of India's GDP. More significantly, over 60 per cent of the country's population is engaged in this activity. The agro industry is regarded as an extended arm of agriculture. The agro-industry mainly comprises of the post-harvest activities of processing and preserving agricultural products for intermediate or final consumption.
The agro Industry is broadly categorised in the following types:
(i) Village Industries owned and run by rural households with very little capital investment and a high level of manual labour; products include pickles, papad, etc.
(ii) Small scale industry characterized by medium investment and semi-automation; products include edible oil, rice mills, etc.
(iii) Large scale industry involving large investment and a high level of automation; products include sugar, jute, cotton mills, etc.
CSR Initiatives in Agro Business:
CSR at ITC Agri Business Division
ITC's Agri Business Division, one of India's largest exporters of agricultural commodities, has conceived e-Choupal.Village internet kiosks managed by farmers called sanchalaks.’e-Choupal' services today reach out to over 4 million farmers in over 40,000 villages through 6500...