After pursuing his masters in the USA, Surat’s Akshay Agarwal moved back to India in 2014 and started researching protective farming practices.

“In other countries, 70 to 80 percent of farmers use the protective farming technique, whereas in India only 2 percent of farmers are using this,” he says.

“It was surprising for us that a country as big as India is not taking full advantage of this simple concept,” adds the 31-year-old entrepreneur.

As per him, protective farming is an agricultural practice where crops are grown in a controlled environment by regulating temperature, humidity, and moisture as per the crop’s growth.

“The idea of protective farming is to reduce resources while increasing the yield and cutting the cost down,” he says.

So in 2019, Akshay along with his brother Saurabh launched GROWit, an agri-tech company to help farmers increase crop yield.

The startup has catered to more than 20,000 farmers across Gujarat, Maharashtra, MP, UP, Karnataka, Rajasthan, Chhattisgarh, Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, and Odisha.

GROWit manufactures products — such as mulch film, shade nets, sticky traps, vermi beds, and agri wires — that help optimise the farm yield.

Through its mobile application, it also guides farmers in climate-smart agriculture to enhance farm productivity.

Recently, the startup was featured on Shark Tank India Season 2. The brothers closed the deal of Rs 50 lakh at 1 percent equity and Rs 50 lakh debt at 10 percent interest.