Tomato sourcing - Public-private partnership with the Government of Maharashtra
To stimulate economic development and reduce poverty, HUL sources locally grown products. Overcoming several barriers such as lack of quality consistency, availability of produce, and price volatility; our sustainable sourcing initiatives, have helped us enhance the livelihoods of small-scale farmers.
The Public-Private Partnership (PPP) project between HUL and the Government of Maharashtra that began in 2012 for sustainable sourcing of tomatoes, has become self-sustaining since 2015.
Taking our initiative a notch higher, the farmers are further provided with a buy-back guarantee for their produce. HUL also offers them with the knowledge and expertise in sustainable agriculture practices for tomato cultivation. This includes the latest agricultural techniques, irrigation practices, and recommendation of the right type of seeds. New tomato varietals have been deployed in 2019 (Varietal Name: UG 101) on 500 acres which have higher yield potential and take lesser time (90 days) to harvest, as compared to traditional varieties (150-180 days). Superior colour tomatoes fetch farmers better prices, and help enhance their overall realisations as well.
Around 8,000 farmers across the country grew tomatoes for Unilever during 2019. This led to 76% of tomatoes used in Kissan ketchup being sourced locally and sustainably.