This wonderful news comes to us from India.
Dreams that fly high begin from the ground. This is the story of town farmers who have managed to produce 700 kg of produce from a farm on the rooftop. Kaustubh Khare and Sahil Paik have invested 19,000 rupees to found a company named Khetify. They were interested in growing vegetables on their rooftop.
It might seem out of a fantasy story, but every year end these green warriors manage to produce over 700 kg of vegetables from their terrace farm. And not only this, they have been the inspiration behind other people in the city as well.
After graduating from IIT-Kharagpur, Kaustubh and Sahil came to Delhi. Sahil joined TERI and Kaustubh joined Young Indian Fellowship. In due course, they worked on the Indian government’s Delhi-Mumbai Industrial Corridor project’s Greenfield Smart Cities program. They had the opportunity to survey many different landfills in the course of their work.
Kaustubh saw that vegetables like brinjal and tomatoes were being grown on the landfills. He was concerned upon seeing this; there were a lot of poisonous materials that went into the landfills and the plants were drawing their nutrition from these products. After returning from the site, Kaustubh shared his insights with Sahil. They decided that the only way to avoid having to eat these poisonous plant products was if they started to grow their own vegetables.
The two friends started by growing vegetables on the terrace of the building in which they had rented an apartment. In a space measuring, 15 feet by 20 feet the two of them started their own farm. While starting their farm Kaustubh felt that the roof of the terrace needed to be protected or it may catch mold. Keeping this in mind, the floor of the terrace was first made waterproof.
Instead of using only earth in the containers, they used coco-peat. This substrate needs lesser amounts of water and being lightweight, there is less strain on the carrying capacity of the floor of the terrace.
The two friends first tasted success in 2016 with their roof garden yielding around 37 kilos of produce. This gave them the motivation to forge ahead. Both the friends gave up their jobs to launch Khetify, their dream startup and concentrated on the task of growing vegetables in an urban setting.
As of today, in Gurgaon, Khetify’s annual produce includes all major vegetables and that too in huge quantities. In the gardens that bear the Khetify tag, there is annual vegetable produce of over 700 kg. This is a commendable turnover and the friends are not looking back.
Image Source: Red Bull