All-organic approach

Nature Bio Foods is India’s pride when it comes to organic farming, with the company steadily increasing its presence in Europe and the US

Organic agriculture has been a way of life for Nature Bio Foods since 1993, and four years down the line in 1997 the company was registered. Over the 25 years that have ensued, the leading Indian organic food producer has made a name for itself as a pioneering business that promotes sustainable development, looks after its farmers, and guarantees uncompromised quality to its customers all over the world.

“To us, organic farming means a lot more than simply growing crops without pesticides and chemicals. It also extends to running the process with consideration for the environment, the people, and the planet,” states Rohan Grover, Director at Nature Bio Foods. “We are proud to be working with over 60,000 farming families who we support in a multitude of ways. Every year, we spend about $100,000 on their socio-economic development. The ‘farmers first’ mode of operation that is guiding us has driven us to build schools for farmers’ children, install hundreds of biogas plants and solar panels, and introduce water purification systems to ensure that our farmers have access to clean water.”

The constant support Nature Bio Foods provides farming families with is an instrumental part of the company’s ambition to deliver a ‘farm-to-fork’ service to its clients. Rohan points out that the organisation covers each and every link of the supply chain, thus acquiring a significant advantage in the marketplace.

“We have our own people who stand by the farmers’ side and assist them at every stage of the agricultural cycle. These people are agri-preneurs of the company. It is paramount for us to be involved in every step of the process, because this is what builds the trust in organic market, especially in the US and Europe, where we export the majority of our production,” he discusses.

“The organic supply chain makes it essential to share with every consumer, traceability of every ingredient. To meet this, we have over 320 employees at the company who engage with the farmers, taking part in the sowing, harvesting, processing, and, subsequently, the export and distribution of the products. Such an end-to-end approach bridges the gap between producer and consumer and enables us to hold full control over the supply chain – ensuring full traceability and organic integrity,” adds Anmol Arora, Director at Nature Bio Foods.

For Nature Bio Foods to maximise its efforts on the distribution side of the business, the company has incorporated two wholly-owned subsidiaries in the last three years. First, in 2017, Nature Bio Foods BV – headquartered in Rotterdam – was formed; and then, a year later, Nature Bio Foods Inc. located in the US was set up.

“As an export-led organisation that sells 40 per cent of its produce in the US and a further 45 per cent across Europe, it made perfect sense to open distribution facilities to make our customer service within our key markets a lot more efficient,” Rohan reasons. “Having been in operation for over three years now, we can say that we are exceptionally pleased with the business of the Dutch warehouses, from which we have distributed more than 30,000 tonnes of organic products all over Europe.”

Italy, Germany, and the Netherlands are the countries in the old continent where Nature Bio Foods supplies most of its ingredients. Outside of Europe, alongside the US, the company has also begun to serve the Oceania market. Traditionally, the organisation exports all sorts of organic rice, organic rice flour, amaranth seeds, chickpeas and other pulses, as well as oil and oil seeds, such as flaxseeds and sesame. All of these are processed in Nature Bio Foods’ world-class plants. The producer invests regularly in its infrastructure and it recently expanded its rice processing facility in Kamaspur (near Delhi) and opened an oil seed plant facility in Bhopal in the central part of India.

“Rice and rice-based products are the ones that are most popular with customers,” Rohan remarks. “We export around 75 per cent of the organic rice that comes from India and contribute some 90-95 per cent of the rice flour that the country sells abroad. In addition, there is currently a lot of excitement surrounding some new ingredients we have started growing that are not necessarily traditional for India, but we are nevertheless trying to popularise. These include Quinoa, Chia seeds & millets,” he explains.

Given the buoyancy of the organic food market at the moment, all prerequisites are in place for Nature Bio Foods to continue to go from strength to strength in the coming years. “It is a 97bn euro market worldwide that is growing at a rate of 20 per cent annually, with Indian organic ingredients worth $750m,” Rohan reveals, before sharing with us his intentions and expectations for the short- and medium-term future: “Our turnover stands at about $55m at present and we have an objective to reach $100m within the next four years. While we will continue to supply the US and Europe with products from India, we also have an idea to start growing crops in other regions of the world, particularly Africa and South East Asia. It is a matter of time before we launch the projects we have in mind, having already held talks with farmers who are interested in partnership with us. We are confident that in no more than two years, we will be offering our ever-demanding European and American customers organic ingredients grown
not just in India, but also in the aforementioned regions, thus making the most of the opportunities the expanding organic food market is opening up.”