Another wanna be farmer: Decision Taken - Want to go rural!

Hello all

Please excuse the long background note, but I want you all to know where I am coming from, so your advice can be more nuanced.

I am based at Amritsar, in Punjab. Am a businessman with background in Rice Milling (family business), International Trade and a personal stint as a Software Entrepreneur.

I have been long dis-satisfied with city life, especially my too much intra time-zone travel mode. Thought about simplifying the life many times, especially as I slowly lost the enthu for traveling to new places and playing tourist in between business moments. Coming home, staying at home, eating home food & just relaxing had started to matter more than evening out, clubbing or similar evening activities.

Farming was one idea that suggested itself again & again and I toyed with it, researched it a bit, talked to few farmers I met during my stint as a Rice Miller and discarded it as a sensible business, in view of the debt trap of excessive costs & fluctuating markets, that these guys were in. And frankly, even after all that effort, it was easier to do nothing……to give a sop to myself that I had tried!!

Then came time of International food shortages, of food price hikes with spillovers to India too, especially keeping in mind that the Indian babus & their political masters were not nimble enough to play the International commodity game and their inept actions gave a push to price actions….a boost to price spikes & a push down to the price slumps.

Still, I saw most farmers around me making money and the itch to do something increased….the sop that these may be a fluke was suddenly not enough!! and some serious thought….some serious research started!

It was around this time that I actually tried to research about what was different this time….why were they not profitable then & why now……why some were still losing money when most were not…why someone makes money & someone loses & so on…

It was around this time….beginning of 2011, that I came across details about organic farming….which to me till then, were fads & scams run by westerners. Researched differences between organic & chemical farming and came upon Natural farming & so on…

It was at this time, around Feb 2011 that I started registering at Indian forums like this one and reading about Indian farmers who knew what was wrong & were doing things in a different way and succeeding at it (cowherd, savera farms & many others). Still I researched further & dithered till last month….just near New Year….I knew that I did not need to take a decision….it was already made, somehow in the back of my mind, I was aware of it too….and that was why I was researching lands & land costs, in addition to farming issues!

I am going to turn natural farmer and shift to a rural landscape and improve my quality of life!

Sanjay.

Next post: My issues, my tentative decisions & my search for land (subject to modifications from advice, further research & encounter with realities in execution).

Welcome Sanjay, you have lot of company here!

Chandra

Sanjay,

Welcome to the club. lots of us here have been going through the same phase you have explained.
I am driven towards farming more from a lifestyle point of view than monetary benefits. Of course, for me sustenance is very important so i will be lying if i said I’m not looking to make some money. But money is not the driving force.

Irrespective of what is  driving you into farming, please make sure you do a lot of ground work before you start out.  Will look forward to your “my tentative decisions & my search for land” posts.

Rgds

Hi Sanjay,
    you are welcome . We have many friends like you and me in this forum .

In short root cause why farmers are not getting enough profits are as below.

*Excessive input costs (Imported seeds, fertilizers and pesticides ).
*Conventional seed bank is destroyed, they have to buy Genetically modified seeds every time.
*And basically we Indians are haramkhor and kamchor , most of us do not want to work, we will prefer to live in slum and get free food, electricity, water in city but do not want to work in farm with dignity.

I am related to Vidarbha region of Maharashtra where many farmers did suicide in last few years.
In this area also you will not get a labor easily … forget about sunday… they prefer to have bidi some liquor and stay at home but will not come to work even offered more money…
 
Thanks,

Once I knew I wanted to farm & retire to a rural life….came the question of where the land should be and how much land should I buy?

Where….well…I have parents who are senior citizens….so I needed a place where medical help would be available at a nearby city in a few hours drive at least…not for emergencies but for routine medical needs…and where I can setup a small home/flat for medical emergencies and general visits……so I need to be within three-four hour drive of a city & I would shift residence temporarily to the city at the slightest sign of any illness in the family….one decision made!

Second, keeping in view my International Trade background…I need to be within 150-200 kms of an International Airport, should I ever plan to export some of the produce….these two requirements mesh into each other…being near a city & one that is an International Airport as well! Though bulk produce goes in containers…in case of horti produce that I am looking to get into….reefer containers….so can’t be too much of a distance or freight cost from a port…but will look into this aspect, when selecting location.

Next came the question of how much land….well this was dictated by economics…all my research indicated average farmer income was around 25000-40000 an acre, read about an excellent farmer earning around 2 Lakhs an acre but then he must be farmer par excellence…read about income from bananas being around 75000-1 Lakh an acre…read about many who lose even the shirt they are wearing and are forced to suicide :-((((

Now I am not a well educated man, but I am a well read one….am good in business too…know how to listen to someone and defer to someone who knows more about a subject than I do….so I do not think that I would lose money……but I definitely would not start minting money the moment I start farming ;-))

So I would figure on earning on the lower end of the rainbow….say 10000 an acre….that based only on intercropping of vegetables as a cash cow….I am sure however many bugs come down upon my head…I should be able to salvage this much with advise from farmers & agricultural extensions/universities :wink: Or should I not count on even this ?

Now taking this figure, I calculate that I should need at least a 100 acres for my type of subsistence farming…and this is keeping in mind that I would be losing out on at least twice this much from the businesses that I would be quitting to start this venture…so earning from the farm is a necessity as I would be quitting some, though not all the earning businesses that I am in. Frankly, I can afford to earn less but I cannot afford to fail.

Comments please….everyone?

Sanjay.

Thanks ppb

Is all Maharashtra short in labour? What about the Dapoli or Konkan Coast region in general?

Thanks Chandra, ari_exec, ppb…really looking forward to baring all my issues here and getting feedback on various aspects of going rural and not only those related to farming only.

I have thought about this a lot. It is very easy for a city guy to think about going rural but most start going bonkers after a while when evening entertainments of a city life or even the social life are missing.

I think that’s the real challenge for a city person…to get the very thing he wants & find how difficult it is to accept it and live with it. We often don’t want the very simplification of life that we initially set out to look for…we are that used to a complex city life.

Sanjay,

If you are thinking big volumes of produce, you dont have to be close to the airport unless you are a frequent flyer. Reefers are economical , so distance to port should not be a major worry at all.

100 acres??? Well… The question I often ask myself is how much do I need for a decent life and then try to work around it. I live in Mumbai and for me I need about a lakh a month to just survive. Maybe someone else need 10 lakhs a month. This is a question best answered by yourself.  If you need 10 lakhs a month / 1.2 crores a year then you may need 100 acres of land. If your needs are just a lakh per month then you need 10-15 acres of land.  So figure it out.

Honestly, you can earn much more than 10,000 rs per acre in a year. All depends on how you manage things.  At the end of the day i would say Agriculture is not rocket science. You will have ups and down but not difficult to figure out. If you have no clue about agriculture then I suggest a visit to the local krishi vigyan kendra. They offer a lot of short training programs which I hear are very good. With the amount of info that is available in the internet you can build a basic knowledge base about growing crops. You then have to put this knowledge into practical work on the field. Its a risk worth taking if you are seriously looking at rural life.

My friend, there is always a trade off in life. You cant have everything unless you choose to live partly on the farm and part in city. (That’s a good option though). Some of these questions can be best answered by the individual. For me, I would love to live on a farm, enjoy the sounds of chirping birds and do something physical work on the farm than spend 10 hours banging away on a unresponsive keyboard.  Each one to his own !!

dont go by calculations available on the net or in books

speak to farmers / universities to get actuals (in my case cost of cultivation data was badly screwed up in some university sites, i went and got the data from the head of agronomy and other sources etc farmer contacts) still i dont not have enough, its still bits and pieces and I use it with lots of buffers based on various inputs ONLY for giving some structure to my plan

if you are going to cultivate cereals, grains & pulses then assume net profit per year / acre between 8000-12000

it is easy to be misled by assuming that you will be able to successfully cultivate multiple crops per year, seed to seed usually takes up a good part of the year in case of cg&p and you need to give the soil REST for around 60 days atleast

whatever you cultivate is going to leech nutrients from the soil, so your yield will depend on the quality, quantity you replenish

completely inorganic is going to render the soil useless very fast

you will need to cycle, you cant grow the same thing or same family on same piece of land again and again so factor in rotation and cycling with your acerage decision as different crops have different life cycles (seed to seed)

in case of hotri, banana will give you 80000 to 100000 per acre in a 12 month cycle (G9), in case of vegetables if you are doing open cultivation then assume between 60000 - 120000 per acre (precision farming, sensible farming etc etc applied)

do not forget to factor in risks pure risk and non-pure as these have a heavy influence on this business

the above numbers will help you in giving an indication of potential income opportunities and acerage you need to procure to achieve your desired target (make lots of money, go back to nature with some money etc). then again the above data can also become very skewed if you are an exceptional farmer with exception luck from all factors…or if you are jinxed where everything goes wrong for you

note that you need to maintain diversity to ensure atleast SOME income e.g. MILK, EGGS, MEAT even though if its a small volume it makes a difference in case of crop failures and also good thing for integrated farming where your cost of inputs can go down and you get better organic inputs etc etc etc

in case of fruits you need to factor in the gestation period

so have a short term, medium term and long term plan for what you are going to produce, what will sell

if you have lots of money buy 5 acres and put in a medium tech or high tech green house, go into exotic vegetables, fruits and flower cultivation …lots of money if marketed right

now take a look at a sample plan (which may or may not work, dont hold me to it)

example yearly yield (single cycle only i.e. after veg 1 is harvested, the land is not cultivated again till next year…yes you can green manure and all that cool stuff to it)

5 acres banana = 80000 * 5 = 400000

2 acres veg 1 = 60000 * 2 = 120000

2 acres veg 2 = 50000 * 2 = 100000

1 acre veg 3 = 50000 * 1 = 100000

2 acre fodder = approx 8 cows * 12 lt/d/c = 96 lt/d = 96*300 (assuming 300 days of lactation) = 28800 lts milk * rs 18 per liter = 518400

total 12 acres
potential income (mid way between optimistic and pessimistic) = approx net 12,38400 per year (TAX FREE), this can either go upto 20-25 lac / year or ZERO e.g. strong gust of wind blows down banana one month before they are harvested, also bringing pests from neighbouring land who screw your veggies…and the cows are from kerala so they decided to join the strike and refuse to give milk

year two , repeat same with different choice of veggies etc on year 1 banana plot and grow banana in the other 5 acres

all figures mentioned above are approximate net income (based on my digging around and r&d and working/calculation etc)

if you look at the above data, you are making around a lakh a year with diversity etc and all the things the good doctors say you should do

Sanjay:

decent land cost per acre = 200000 * 100 = 2 crores + another 10-25 lacs in developing that kind of acerage (fencing, levelling, waterworks, quaters, shed, etc etc) so 2.25 crores

there is no way you are gonna cultivate 100 acres at one shot, if you can then assume 50 thousand rs cost of cultivation per acre = 50 lakhs to 75 lakhs a year

assume net income per year @100000/ac = 1 cr/yr

from a pure business point of view

cost of good land per acre in lets say kodaikanal (with water quality like mineral water) = 15 lakhs/acre

buy 4 acres = 60 lakhs

spend 70 lakhs to 1 cr on building a high quality greenhouse (1 hectare)…this can probaly work out cheaper with a medium quality or maybe high as i dont have exact costs …in any case you build more than one in a hectare …and 70-1cr is total cost of building etc

grow exotic cut flowers for export , domestic and exotic fruits…you can make around 50 l to 2 cr or more a year (ask atul on this forum or check out the tnau website for green house rose / flower cultivation economics <–take this with lots of buffer)

managing a hectare is easier than managing 100 acres…and getting 100 acres cultivated and sold each year can be quiet a daunting task

again i say this…never never forget the two risks pure (natural) and non pure (business)

anyways you can do the math and hopefully these numbers can add some shape to your plan and dreams

cheers
brijesh

Brijesh,

Very well said. You have to do a lot of homework before stepping out.

My thoughts on your calculations:

-In the above example 10 acres yielding 720,000 rs.  Why not grow banana on all 10 acres to realize 800,000 Rs?? You can have R1 and R2 in 8-10 subsequent months. So basically 3 yields in 28 months.

  • Secondly, 8 cows will give milk for 300 days. What after that? They have a gestation period of 150 days after that. So no milk then. Only feed costs. In dairy business you have to take 450 days as one cycle i.e only 60% of your cows will be milking at any given time or lets says 5 cows in your example. So 5*12lt = 60 ltrs per day * 300 days = 18000 ltrs * 18 rs per lt = 324000 rs. Now this is just your turnover. There are feed and other associated  production costs which accounts for about 70-75% of your gross earnings. With 30% margins you are looking at about 1 lakh net return.  And dont forget the opportunity cost of 2 acres of land where you growing fodder. 

Brgds

growing banana in all 10 acres is putting all eggs in one basket
you will realize income only after 12 months
in this model you are harvesting 4 crops in 12 months at an average  so 8 crops or yields in 24 months

and banana will not give you yield in 8-10 months (this is the best scenario you are working with and these are promises made by a lot of agri consultants and tissue culture sapling vendors etc) remember this example for beginner farmer …banana g9 safely assume a year for seed to seed or sapling to fruit if call it that

how you structure is your choice based on different factors, as i said this is just an example to show sanjay how yearly income can work or be calculated at a rough level as we always look at CTC/year :slight_smile: . the important thing conveys some important information for people like us (non agri background) which is not to go by just data available, risks, methodologies or approaches that can be followed, diversity, sustainability etc and most of all…5+5 is never 10 in this business

as i said earlier you need to rotate your crops, unless you are planning to take  the second and third ratoon of banana (which does not yield very good apparently but depends on your location, soil etc) your yield for year two will be lower as you are planting banana again and the crop profile is just leeching the same nutrients from the soil again (oh yes lot of juices available in the market to boost the yield but you will need to say bye bye to your land very soon and your cost of cultivation will shoot)…80000 per acre in banana is possible using pure organic though …keep this in mind…BUT the rotation /cycling funda will always apply organic or non-organic
(most farmers (2-30 acres owners)  that i have actually met do not go for ratoons citing yield issues )

for start up farmers…first yield kaisa hoyega maloom nahi…forget r1 r2…bottom line is…risk exposure…once you get a hang of things i believe your land will actually talk to you…and you will be able to predict the behaviour, yield of your crops with greater certainity …arising out of experience and adjusting your inputs / technologies etc (5 years alteast to reach this level from salaried professional to professional farmer)

revised milk calculation (earlier had errors)

2 acres = 10 cows * 12 lt/d/c = 120 lt/d = 120 * 300 = 36000 lts of milk = 6,48,000 GROSS …net income is 60% to 70% i.e. around 4 lakhs (since non high yielding cows so less concentrate and more nutritious home grown fodder, existing farm labour can contribute to taking care of these 10 cows)

jersey cow cross breed …lactation days 300, dry days 90 (jersey cross will have a cycle of 390 days or less depending on what indian cross it is e.g. Jersey H, Jersy G or Jersey R)

for a small dairy of 10 cows (Jersey cross medium yielding) this is a low cost dairy option for small farm (in case of large farm the working and the entire strategy changes)…use the numbers below as guidelines and no absolute recommendations

you will procure 10 at one go…minimum batch size is recommened to be 10

days in a year = 365
milking days = 30010 = 3000
dry days = 65 (yearly calculation) = 65
10 = 650

3000 * 12 (avg. medium yield animals) = 36000 liters * 18 = 6,48,000

a minimum of 50% profit of this gross can be made since this is a low cost family operation i.e. 3,20,000

avg yield 12 ltrs …convert this to 4% Fat corrected milk = 14 ltrs

avg DMI for 14 ltr FCM per day = 10.09 kgs…lets say 10 kgs (this is average as number will change based on week of lactation)

if you work out the protein and energy requirement to sustain 14 lts FCM per day, it does not go above 1-2 kg per day if you are using good quality forage

35 kg green fodder (home grown germanecious, cereal, leguminous mix) @20% DM = 7 kg
1 kg dry fodder (purchased) @85% DM = .5 kg
around 4 kg concentrate feed (purchased) @75% DM = 3 kg
total 10.5 kg DMI served with avg 16%-19% CP

gf @.25/kg = 8.75
df @1/kg = 1
conc @12/kg = 48
total feed cost approx 58 rs per day / lactating cow = approx 26.9% of revenue

12*18= 216
total feed cost = 58
feed cost % = 58/216 * 100 = 26.9 i.e 27%

lets add a generous 23% as (labour, non feed i.e. medical, mineral mix, probiotic, vaccination, dry cow feed, heifer and calves overhead) trust me 23% is too much non feed percentage for 10 cows

so you are left with around 50% profit, remove another 5% as non believer allowance…so 45% …therefore i stand corrected, nte income around 3 lacs in a year

now your are using 2 acres for this i.e. 1.5 lacs / acre / year (more than you get from cultivation)

i know it is not as simple as i have made it to be…but the calculations are real …the strategy is scaled down for this homestead plan

(the cost can be also be lower by optimizing, feed strategy etc)

speaking of opportunity cost, i have heard a lot of this word…how exactly do you arrive at OC when it comes to agriculture, its like comparing apples to oranges so not sure how i would personally work this out

so total income is

banana = 400000 (11-12 months)
veg 1 = 120000 (6-9 months)
veg 2 = 100000 (6-9 months)
veg 3 = 100000 (6-9 months)
milk = 300000 (DAILY INCOME)

total around 80k to 1 lakhs per acre, SPREAD around throughout the year…and not waiting till end of year to get some money

in this sample model, cost of cultivation will also be less as integrated farm provides lot of natural inputs e.g. 7 adults and 3 young animals can apparently produce approximately 19 tons of vermicompost per year, which should be more or less enough for your bananas, veggies etc. cost of vermicompost if procured from outside works out to  4-7 rupees a kg i believe…vermicompost better than compost or fym as nutrients more readily available to plants etc

some additional thoughts

bumper yield can also be a pure risk

e.g. lets assume sanjay purchases 100 acres of land and the gods favour him
it is fair to assume he is not going to try extreme diversity in such a huge acerage e.g. 5 acres per crop as it can drive people insane…alteast me (this example can apply even in case of diversity)

he cultivates maize on 50 acres as its a maize growing area (you would ideally place your money on success crops in the near region / vicinity/ district if you are developing large acerage)

and in 180 days …lo super bumper yield ! (gods favour sanjay i.e. season favourable, rainfall super, temperature great, pollinators hard at work generally a great year weather and climate wise)

however, what holds true for sanjay also holds true for other cultivators of maize in that geographic zone …and suddenly you have a maize surplus…what could be sold for 10 rs/kg last year can get only 4-7 this year due to surplus arising out of bumper crop

now options

  1. get rate that does not cover your cost (lick your wounds and move on)
  2. get rate that barely covers your cost
  3. get rate that gives you a 10% margin
  4. 15% margin

again not sure if yield of all 50 acres going to be sold at same time to same purchaser at same price

  1. store to sell later when market recovers (storage cost, storage risk, market price risk)

cheers
brijesh

Thanks Brijesh

Great Inputs. And Thanks Agri, for the queries to brijesh…just the kind of interaction I am looking to generate to get optimum feedback.

Am replying separately, so that individual points in the discussion are highlighted for others like me…later.

Brijesh…from farmer figures here in Punjab…25K…but then that’s based in two crops, rabi & kharif…wheat & rice, from the same land in rotation, is the bare minimum one should get from the land, unless you have a major pest attack or some other natural disaster…normal figure is 40-50k…but there are exceptions of bad farmers earning lesser or even losing money at the same time others are earning.

But I had not come across 8-12k figure anywhere or I would not have based my income at 10k/acre minimum. Could you please advise region & conditions where farmers earn 8-10k from cereals, grains & pulses?

but IAC, from both your inputs, it is clear that it is possible for a newbie to achieve at least 10k and quite possibly much much more, if one applies oneself.

Agri, you seem to compute average farming income to be around 1 Lac an acre. Brijesh’s answer is more nuanced but both replies seem to converge, around the 50K plus & diverge only based upon crop & farming method & related costs…and again 100-120k per acre seems to be the decent income for a farmer .

As far as I am concerned, I would take 100k as target potential income & 10k as the minimum income that I need to achieve in the first year itself, failing which I would probably pull my ear ;-))

My Thanks, for your inputs.

[quote=“sanjay_arora”]
Brijesh…from farmer figures here in Punjab…25K…but then that’s based in two crops, rabi & kharif…wheat & rice, from the same land in rotation, is the bare minimum one should get from the land, unless you have a major pest attack or some other natural disaster…normal figure is 40-50k…but there are exceptions of bad farmers earning lesser or even losing money at the same time others are earning.

But I had not come across 8-12k figure anywhere or I would not have based my income at 10k/acre minimum. Could you please advise region & conditions where farmers earn 8-10k from cereals, grains & pulses?[/quote]

this is the realistic minimum figure that I have mentioned, it again depends on seed quality, region (am talking TN figures, i believe there is a hybrid maize seed in development that can yield around 4000 kg/ac)
maize example (acre) all figures are approx

land prep 2000
seeds & sowing expenses 1200
manures & manuring (procured from outside) 8000
weeding 900
plant protection , harvesting approx 1800
total 13820

minimum yield 2500 kg
minimum selling price = 8.8 (agmark / govt msp avg)
gross income 22000
net income around 8000

now in reality you can sell at 10 and your net profit will be a little more than 11000 per acre and if you use a high yield variant and get around 3500 kg per acre then @8.8 approx net income is 16900 and @10 is 21000

please use this data only as examples

dont know much about wheat, rice i have given up as paddy is back breaking work and getting labour to do this on a large scale is a pain unless i have very good contacts in the middle east for exporting this rice to the indian expats and arabs (good market there but very sensitive to govt policies as the govt has a habit of banning rice exports now and then)

[quote="sanjay_arora"]
but IAC, from both your inputs, it is clear that it is possible for a newbie to achieve at least 10k and quite possibly much much more, if one applies oneself.

Agri, you seem to compute average farming income to be around 1 Lac an acre. Brijesh’s answer is more nuanced but both replies seem to converge, around the 50K plus & diverge only based upon crop & farming method & related costs…and again 100-120k per acre seems to be the decent income for a farmer .

As far as I am concerned, I would take 100k as target potential income & 10k as the minimum income that I need to achieve in the first year itself, failing which I would probably pull my ear ;-))[/quote]

so you are saying you want to make a minimum of 1 lakh/ac a year in the first year, which is a fair target but the real clincher here is what is the scale? you can probably acheive this or close to it for 10-15 acres in year 1 (dedicated / intensive ) as remember you will still be learning and dependent on a lot of R&D and external inputs

a better target would be how much net tax free you want to make in year 1, year 2, year 3 etc which can increase or multiply as years go by due to experience etc and then work backwords from year 10 where you feel you need to make lets say 2 crores from your entire farm enterprise in a year…what this will do is force you to think on the most efficient and effective model and work out how many acres you need to procure at year 0 which is bearing in mind eventual goal of 2 cr in year 10 (forget buying in parts as that is risky, and expensive and non realistic ) land rate will go up, wont be avaible in single belt and too much overhead

Sanjay

just so you know

my forecast for my farming enterprise based on all the r&d and legwork done so far is as follows (am not a pessimist though :slight_smile: )

end year 1 = net income from all farming enterprises = 0
end year 2 = net income from all farming enterprises = 3-5 lakhs minimum
end year 3 = net income from all farming enterprises = 10-15 lakhs minimum

start year 4 = reevaluate for next 5 years

acerage targetted to be procured at year 0 around 50-75

my advice to you would be…dont be hard bound by targets…just make sure you have untouchable money to eat, house and other basic stuff in the bank for 2-3 years and everything else will be fine even if you use ignore all experts, consultants, hi technology etc…and apply only common sense and have 3-4 good farms in the neighbourhood as your mentors/guides plus a kvk during the initial years

my interest in farming started out as a pure altruist pursuit primary and commercial secondary around 2-3 years ago…now it is reverse (that does not mean i dont believe or wont follow sustainable agriculture)

brijesh

This was the strangest question of all. Normally one buys land around his town, or in his district or at the very least, in his state.

In my case, Punjab is not for agriculture anymore….at least not for anyone who needs to buy land at today’s prices. In fact, the land prices in Punjab have created a consumer wave in Punjab. Kids of farmers want to dispose off the land partially or fully for the things it can buy them.

In Punjab, there are more Pajeros in rural villages than in towns. In one way, it is good…that the wealth is being distributed, instead of remaining focussed in towns. On the other hand, its a pity to see what the money is doing to rural people.

Some though, are being quite shrewd and to see them, one gets reaffirmed faith that all things are not going to dogs……they are liquidating part of their holdings and using the proceeds to buy cheaper lands elsewhere in India, in addition to, buying the consumer goodies!

Land prices in the worst areas of Punjab would not be less than 10 Lacs an acre and still one would not get land in a continuous stretch. Neighbouring Haryana too has no land less than 6-7 lacs an acre and continuous land problem exists there too. Such high land prices invert the ROI percentages on the land investment.

Himachal & J&K do not allow outsiders to buy land. So the only options for reasonably priced land for me seem to be venturing further.

Most nearby is Rajasthan, Land priced anywhere between 50k to 2.5 Lacs, depending upon wether irrigated from Canal water or not and other issues. Sandy soils, groundwater levels lower than 350-400 feet and wells often going dry. Govt. control on bore wells means you either grease officials for excess drawl or you have problems. No security related problems though.

Next, Madhya Pradesh. Land 50k to 10L/acre, depending upon how far in the boondocks. Tribal areas………some of the border districts with Maharastra & most with Chattisgarh are Naxal affected. So security is a major problem in those areas. Am still researching about MP though.

Next, Maharastra, Andhra Pradesh & Tamil Nadu. Am concerned about Naxal related security issues in Andhra. But, still in research phase about these states.

Would like get inputs from members. Areas of concern are:

  1. Land price.
  2. Security.
  3. Labour availability.
  4. Sensitivity of local people about outsiders coming in among them & farming “their” land, specially if more successfully (if it happens, god willing)

Hope people can give suggestions and help me find a place that I will call home for the rest of my life!

My Thanks!!

No, what I meant was that farming 100 acres, organic, natural, horticultural produce that would flower 3,4 or 5 years or more, intercropped with vegetables for cash income…I should be happy to earn 10k or 10000/acre or 10Lacs a year on 100 acres. Would need to pull my ears, if I don’t even earn that much.

I am assuming here that I will have a business plan ready by the time I buy land, will have decisions about what & how much to plant already made…only execution left.

I am also assuming that I will be able to prepare land and plant the long term horti crops in year one in ample time to be able to sow veggies for cash flow in the first year itself.

Possible?

Brijesh…Can you please advise approx. what amount of land farmed have you kept in this computation, each year, out of 50-75 acres to be bought?

Hi Sanjay,
    I think  you should exclude Tamilnadu from the list. I do not have any hatred towards anybody, infact I have been in chennai for past few years but peoples here do not prefer non native language speakers.  One of white collar native guy plunged in agriculture says he himself been looked as outsider in rural areas of tamilnadu, it can be even an isolated instance. But every community will have certain characteristic and we need to accept the facts.

Madhyapradesh: Target areas can be Maharashtra and MP border (Best suitable should be on the way nagpur towards MP border hardly 100+ kms. Its possible to get 2lacks/acre easily) . Stay away from Maharashtra and Andhra border, fully naxalite area.  One more place of MS and MP border from Jalgaon district towards Burhanpur or Khandawa . Prices though am not sure.

If you plan for Andhra, within 150kms of hydrabad you will definitely get cheaper good agri land .
Infact Andhra is the place where I could see lot of peoples are buying cheaper agri land in bulk (I found some websites of brokers devoted to Andhra agri land alone).

Maharashtra: I belong to maharashtra, so natuarally I will say peopels are willing to accommodate outsiders you will not face much issues.
Mumbai and Konakn region is the target by builder lobby so I think its better to not to consider this area .
In vidarbha region of Maharashtra nearby nagpur it will costly, one more problem with Vidarbha region is no irrigation and this region is famous as suicide belt  . Though recently many organic farmers are doing well in vidarbha region .

If we come of Jalgaon, Bhusaval region its banana capital of india and lands are pretty costly .
Nasik,pune,kolhapur region just exclude most costliest lands but extremely good irrigation and grapes/banana/sugarcane etc etc cash crops are plenty .

Marathwada region am not sure never been there  but peoples used to call it as bit backward area, need to check possibilities here .

Do let me know if I could help in any way and could provide any other info.

Thanks.

Maharashtra buying agri land requires farmers license

I dont agree with the TN comment because I have personally seen and met a lot of non native farmers (even goras) doing agri in rural TN and with good success

there are a lot of them active on this forum as well, contact nkjohri (kaustabh, he is one of them)

TN has a mix of 7 agro climatic zones and after my personal evaluation it seems like the best bet

AP is good however water is a major problem (chandra will be able to guide you on that)

another advantage with TN is the work done by the state govt and agri university (TNAU) to assit farmers, check out the TNAU website to get an idea

log of help, r&d, seeds & other inputs can be procured from the kvk or university in TN

cheers
brijesh