Jivabhumi works mostly with small farmers who follow the principles of organic agriculture such as The principle of health, The principle of ecology, The principle of fairness and The principle of care. You can find more details about these principles here (http://www.ifoam.bio/en/organic-landmarks/principles-organic-agriculture).
Our Farmers use only natural and traditional methods of farming and do not use any soil damaging chemical fertilizers and poisonous pesticides during cultivation. The primary inputs our farmers use are cow manure and goat manure(Kuri Gobbara) and environmental friendly fertilizers such as Pancha Gavya, Neem Oil and so on. This sustainable natural farming technique is PGS Certified. PGS stands for Participatory Guarantee System (PGS), the globally accepted standards for sustainable agriculture practices. PGS initiatives are oriented towards small farmers that sell locally and directly. It is a quality assurance initiative in which peer farmers/co-operatives assess, inspect and verify the production practices of each other and decide if their peer group is entitled for PGS Certification. This is typically handled by the heads of co-operatives. It’s a participatory approach, a shared vision of the co-operative/farmers and a community initiative with significantly lower costs compared to 3rd party certification .
In addition to working with PGS certified organic groups, we also work with some farmers referred by our community of farmers who are in the process of obtaining certification. But sometimes, these farmers are individuals practicing Natural/Organic farming but are unable to join or form a group or community. These farmers abide by the same principles of organic agriculture, but lack peer reviews from a certification standpoint. So, we follow a strict procedure of regular and random checks by visiting them personally before we procure from them. The long-term intent is to form local co-operatives of such independent farmers and get them certified in future.
We believe, the food that we consume must not only be free from harmful chemicals & pesticides but also be as ‘Local’ as possible. Locally Grown food is not only healthy but also significantly improves the economy of the local farmers. Local means the geographical proximity (distance) of where the produce is grown from the place where it is consumed. With ‘local’ produce we would be able to connect with the local farmer, which connects back into a relationship with the source of your food. In addition, locally grown and sourced food stems the carbon footprint (food miles) of your food.