In order to give new dimensions to agripreneurship development and to enhance agricultural growth through innovation and partnerships, a Memorandum of Agreement (MoA) has been signed between the University of Agricultural Sciences, Raichur (UAS-R) and the International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics (ICRISAT). This will provide support to set up an agribusiness incubator (ABI) at the University’s Raichur campus, in Karnataka, India.
ICRISAT will help identify and promote agribusiness start-ups, as well as facilitate agro-technology transfer in the North Karnataka region, which is expected to enhance the impact of outreach activities for the University.
Entrepreneurs will get technical and business development support in seed production, farm machinery and food processing domains. This will be through technical support to develop business models, capacity building and training for incubator personnel, facilitate strategies and systems for technology commercialization and consulting services for promotion of agribusiness in the region.
“This partnership with ICRISAT opens a new chapter for the University in promoting technology and agri-based entrepreneurship in the region,” said Dr PM Salimath, Vice Chancellor of UAS-R.
“ICRISAT and its partners have been successful in facilitating the establishment of agribusiness incubators in India and Africa aimed at engaging youth, women and farmers to initiate small and micro-level agribusiness ventures. We hope to achieve similar results through this partnership with UAS-R,” said Dr Peter Carberry, Deputy Director General (Research), ICRISAT.
The handholding and mentoring support for UAS-R will be provided through the co-business incubation initiative of the Agri-Business Incubation Program — part of the ICRISAT Agribusiness & Innovation Platform (AIP) that focuses on promoting agribusiness ventures and public-private-partnership (PPP) initiatives in the agricultural sector.
ICRISAT AIP provides prototype innovations, knowledge and expertise, training and co-location with researchers for close interaction; while the entrepreneurs fine-tune the prototypes and take them to market, as well as bearing the risks and reaping the rewards involved.