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Rushil plants 120 million agroforestry trees in rural Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh

Agroforestry
Picture for representational purpose. Photo: Wiki Commons

Rushil Décor, provider of smart living solutions, is transforming contemporary residential and commercial spaces, has said that it has planted over 120 million agroforestry trees in Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh, since last four years.

The company has also pledged to further strengthen its agroforestry capacity initiatives in an integrated manner with crops and livestock to improve productivity, employment, income and livelihoods of rural households, impacting smallholder farmers and offering 20,000 skilled and unskilled employment (farmers, agriculture labour and cutting labors).

A Statement said that this included planting over 50 million trees in the Chikmagalur, Hassan, and Shimoga districts of Karnataka and 70 million trees in the Visakhapatnam, East Godawari, and Vizianagaram districts of Andhra Pradesh. The fast-growing, short rotational crops: Eucalyptus, Casuarina, Silver Oak, and Acacia used as raw materials in the industry, offer direct income to farmers, agriculture labour, and women labor, around the plantation.

Rushil’s modern, future boards (MDF) plants in Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh procures agroforestry wood affecting the livelihood of millions of man-days annually and three rotation cycle in ten years of renewable resources to keep rolling the rural economy.

Assuring a consistent supply of raw material, Rushil Decor’s team regularly engages with rural farmers to extend advanced technical support for agroforestry, offering seeds and seedlings of different agroforestry species through nurseries, necessary subsidies, and transportation support, training and guidance at factory and district center, distribution of materials, price updates for harvesting along with market support.

Rushil Decor’s modern facilities also help nurture local ancillary industries like furniture, panel, transport, and local artisans leading to significant employment opportunities. The plants are strategically located close to raw material sourcing agroforestry-plantations and hence, create sustainable livelihood, reduce transportation impact, and lower emissions, driven by smart manufacturing and automated robotic production. Rushil Decor partners with the Indian Plywood Industries Research & Training Institute (IPIRTI), Institute of Wood Science and Technology (IWST) & Association of Indian Panelboard Manufacturers (AIPM) to enhance its capabilities in agroforestry & strategic sourcing of raw materials from farmers, creating a mutually beneficial relationship.

Agroforestry is defined as a land use system that integrates trees and shrubs on farmlands and rural landscapes to enhance productivity, profitability, diversity, and ecosystem sustainability. It is a dynamic, ecologically based, natural resource management system that, through the integration of woody perennials on farms and in the agricultural landscape, diversifies and sustains production and builds social institutions.

Rushil K Thakkar, Director, Rushil Decor, said, “Trees are one of our best investments against the climate crisis. As a responsible organization, we at Rushil Decor are committed to promoting agroforestry to sequester carbon and broaden the social, economic, and environmental sustainability of rural development. The smart use of trees in agricultural land systems can also make substantial contributions to the conservation of biodiversity. Agroforestry can also help diversify and sustain (food) production and provide vital social, economic, and environmental benefits for land use at scale–shaping a greener planet and better future for all.”

Rushil’s agroforestry-based plants enhance marginal and small farmers with minimal land holding capacity of fewer than five acres. This initiative has been directed to generate economic momentum, sustainable livelihood, and job opportunities for thousands of skilled and unskilled people in Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka. What strengthens this is Rushil’s association with local bodies like Agriculture Market Committee and Karnataka Forest Development Corporation (KFDC) by procuring locally grown agroforestry wood by farmers.

With the rise in living standards, the need for wood is encouraging agro farming which results “farm to furniture” vision of a successful layout for the industry. Trees provide a way forward for sustainable farming and the world must embrace innovative options to maximize agroforestry productivity for mitigating climate change leading to a sustainable ecosystem.

According to industry insights, empowering agroforestry at a national level can offer significant benefits to the economy, and composite panel industries can create employment opportunities for 2 to 2.5 million people approximately. The full value chain from 110 – 115 million CBM timber (timber to furniture) can create value-added produce of $150 billion. An important benefit is carbon sequestration: the increase in forest cover and that too of younger trees will have a 2 billion metric ton carbon sequestration potential by 2050.

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