I am a student pursuing Management and Leadership at Exeter, Uk. I am extremely interested in agriculture and hence have decided to take it up as a profession. Initially I am setting up a farm of 50 acres, about 90 kms from Chennai city.
The process for preparing the land and infrastructure are underway at the moment.
Initially the plan is to start with the dairy as i will have a regular source of income helping me sustain the farm. The cattle will be purchased in lots of either 25 or 33 such that i can maintain an average milking ration of 75/67% respectively. Green fodder production machine is being set up to produce 3 tons of fodder on a daily basis. Since the average cow will weight half a ton, calculating 4% as weight to feed ratio; daily consumption will be 2 tons including wet and dry fodder. I am keeping higher capacity to accommodate for future growth of herd size. I will use silage as well. For the breeding concerns, i have found excellent breeders supplying high quality sperm so will artifically inseminate the indian 87% hf cows with foreign (dutch or american) hf to gradually increase the quality of my herd.
I will practice open field as well as protected cultivation.
Open farming will comprise of:
Papaya, Pomegranate, Coconut, Groundnut, Various gourds (pandal), Watermelon amongst other.
Using hydrogel in certain areas to improve the quality of the produce by increasing nutrient content of produce. For example, tomatoes grown using hydrogel require much lesser fertilizer as there is no waste and they produce much stronger flavors as compared to those grown in soil.
Protected cultivation will comprise of:
2 x 2 acre polyhouses, one with hi-tech weather control and the other with basic weather control.
In the hi-tech fully weather controlled i will grow high value crops such as British cucumber and egyptian strawberry using hydroponics and soil. I will use rockwool for hydro as these have the highest recommendations amongst farmers in the UK.
Thirdly, I will install a biogas plant for electricity and fertilizer mitigating my dependence on erratic electricity supply in India.
Lastly I WILL PRACTICE AGRICULTURE WITH NO PLOUGHING TO MAINTAIN MY SOIL STRUCTURE AND GRADUALLY IMPROVE SOIL FERTILITY ALONG WITH A RABBIT DUNG BASED VERMICOMPOSTING UNIT AS THEIR DUNG NEEDS NO TREATMENT AND IMRPOVES EARTHWORM REPRODUCTION RATES.
Would like to know your thoughts on my venture. Also if any consultants are reading this, please get in touch as your help will also be beneficial.
Thank you and look forward to your thoughts.