Washington, Oct 9 (IANS) India's Jain Irrigation Systems Limited has been honoured with the annual IFC Client Leadership Award for its pioneering work to promote sustainable agriculture and raise farmers' incomes through the efficient use of water, energy, and fertiliser.
The award was presented the award to Jain Managing Director Anil Jain by IFC Executive Vice President and CEO Lars Thunell here during Annual Meetings of the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank, IFC, a member of the World Bank Group is the largest development institution focused on the private sector in developing countries.
The award recognizes IFC clients that share IFC's commitment to socially and environmentally sustainable development and demonstrate innovation, operational excellence, and strong corporate governance.
'We in Jain feel deeply honored,' Anil Jain said. 'The IFC Client Leadership Award recognizes our groundbreaking efforts in increasing agriculture productivity for small farmers and our vision of 'leave this world better than you found it.'
'IFC's partnership as an investor and advisor is helping us sustain our efforts to broaden this endeavour across a large spectrum of small holders to enhance their incomes and to mitigate the environmental impact of agriculture.'
Jain introduced drip irrigation to India's agriculture and has grown to become the world's second-largest player in the micro-irrigation industry.
The use of Jain's drip-irrigation technology has resulted in water savings equal to the annual water consumption of more than 10 million households.
In addition, it has tailored its business model to include the poor-creating a supply chain of 25,000 small farmers, 90 percent of whom work with less than one hectare of land. The use of drip irrigation has also led to efficiency gains that have raised annual incomes for small farmers by up to $1,000.
Thunell said: 'Jain Irrigation Systems is a global competitor whose inclusive business model has helped raise incomes for thousands of small farmers, and developed innovative technologies that address the challenges of water conservation and sustainable agriculture. We are proud to be a partner to Jain in this work.'
Food production is the leading contributor to water scarcity, and it is most affected by scarcity. Agriculture accounts for 70 percent of fresh-water usage around the world. Finding ways to reduce the water footprint of food production is central to addressing water scarcity.