Arya Flexible Hermetic Solution (FHS)
Stage of adaption :
Augmenting smallholder income has been among the most important intended policy outcomes. Impactful and relevant post-harvest interventions could go a long way in facilitating achievement of this objective. Aggregation of farm produce is the key activity for initiation of post-harvest value chain activities. And here comes the importance of storage spaces for commodities. The Planning Commission has recently estimated the gap between agri-warehousing supply and demand at 35 – 40 million metric tonnes. And situation is far more critical in case of storage facilities for small holders and FPOs. Through its Flexible Hermetic Solutions (FHS), Arya intends to bridge this gap for smallholder farmers and their organisations.
FHS are flexible hermetic storage structures that store agri-commodities for exceptionally long periods without any chemical pest control interventions. These structures can stock commodity volumes ranging from 50 MT to 300 MT. This technology has proven its utility in improving farm income by supporting aggregation and storage in very remote places with no availability of formal warehouses. This technology enables setting up of a storage structure on demand without any construction activity. This technology enables farmers and Farmer Producer Organisations to store their produce at the place of their choice. Indeed, FHS helps small holders achieve their objective of farm gate storage of produce.
FHS devices can be installed at short notice at almost any location and can be moved from one place to another with great ease. This brings in a lot of versatility in its use as a storage structure. And a tremendous fit as a farm gate storage device for small holders and FPOs.
Apart from versatility and mobility, the structure also provides for commodity quality upkeep without any chemical intervention. Obtaining fumigation services from licensed service providers are a challenge in remote locations for farmers and FPOs. Commodity stored in FHS do not require fumigation.
Arya’s financing arm, Aryadhan Financial Solutions, has approved FHS stored commodity as eligible commodity for offering warehouse receipt financing. Progress is thus being made in overcoming the key challenge of availability of a comprehensive stirage and financial solution for farmers and FPOs.
The technology has been tested for on-field storage of a wide range of commodities in multiple locations. For organic farmers and FPOs, storage of commodity without fumigation is a great challenge. FHS is the only available technology to store organically labelled produce globally.
These flexible structures being hermetic in nature, insulates the stored material from outside air contact and hence drastically slow down any fungus growth. This is a huge benefit for the food industry sensitive to aflatoxin. For example, aflatoxin in maize is a serious health hazard for FPOs, which store maize for poultry feed purpose. FHS devices facilitate storage of maize with reduced risk from aflatoxin contamination.
FHS is a tremendous fit for storage needs of farmer collectives. There is always a challenge to get appropriate storage facilities for the farmer collectives. Usually storage facilities are located close to large agri-centers, and smallholders and their organisations are normally unable to access them. FHS has made it possible to extend post-harvest services to such stakeholders located in remote centers.
Deployed in large scale
Over the past two years Arya has deployed the technology for a range of commodities across locations.
Already close to thousand farmers have availed FHS facility through their FPOs. Below is an on-field installation of FHS device at Samastipur in Bihar, where the FPO had stored maize.
Technology Not Protected
Smallholder farmers and their organisations are primarily the target customers for this technology. The technology is also useful for storage by Corporates that intend to buy directly from farmers.
There exists a shortage of 35-40 Million Tonnes of storage capacity in the country. FHS can prove to be a very effective model to bridge this gap, especially for users and in areas where it is most severe. There are no scalability challenges for the technology.
At this point in time these systems are imported from global sources hence taxes, freight and various cost factors are a challenge. Arya is making efforts to manufacture these systems locally to bridge this gap.
At present cost of one unit of 300 MT FHS system is approximately INR 8.0 Lacs.
FHS addresses the farmgate level storage challenge of small holders and FPOs. This gives an opportunity for small holder to initiate post-harvest activities. It is expected that by undertaking post-harvest activities small holders can improve their income to the tune of 25% in a single season. FHS systems also have a favourable environmental footprint as there exists no chemical intervention for storage under this technology. By limiting the fungus in stored food grains FHS system also reduced incidence of aflatoxin challenges in food chain.