In 2015, Harish Chandra Singh retired as a Colonel from the Army and now spends most of his time cultivating different varieties of superfoods.

“Retired life is the best time to pursue one’s hobbies,” he says.

When he decided to take up farming, he wanted to try growing superfood crops that were not widely seen and were expensive.

For instance, Harish started growing chia seeds on his 4-bigha (about one acre) land as they are in great demand for their health benefits like lowering blood pressure.

“Chia seeds are so expensive, which is the primary reason why I started cultivating them. Also, it takes less time to grow and the seeds are easily available,” he shares.

Just like wheat, the chia seeds are sown in October but they will be ready for harvest a month before wheat.

Harish says, “It costs around Rs 15,000 per acre to grow chia seeds and one can earn up to Rs 1 lakh from it. The cost of 1 kg of chia seeds is currently Rs 200 per kg.”

Apart from chia seeds, he also grows other superfoods like dragonfruit and purple potatoes.

“It is not common to grow purple potatoes in this region as its seeds are sourced from different countries like Mexico. It is sold for Rs 100 per kg compared to the regular potatoes that are sold for Rs 6 per kg,” he says.

Collectively, he earns Rs 11 lakh annually by growing chia seeds, purple potatoes, and dragon fruits.

“Experiments are being done in every field today. So why should agriculture remain untouched?” says Harish.

“Our country is depending on other world nations for the supply of superfoods. By cultivating them we can be more self-sufficient. The prospects of reaching a global market will bring in more youngsters to this field,” he adds.