Kerala Couple Returns Home to Start Organic Farming, Grow 7 Traditional Rice Varieties

Pavithra A and her husband Mohammed Rinas did not enjoy their work life in Mumbai and always longed to go back home to Kerala.

So, when in 2016, Pavithra found out about a project, which promoted conscious and self-sustaining development in the region, by the Salim Ali Foundation in Kerala, she immediately decided to join it.

So, she left her job as an HR, and soon after, her husband, who was a mechanical engineer, also followed her to Kerala.

As part of the project, the couple would educate people about the benefits of organic farming and clean living.

After working on the project, the couple was compelled to take up organic farming. They leased around 15 acres of barren land in Vellangallur and started cultivating traditional rice varieties.

Pavithra says, “We didn’t have enough money to kick-start it. So, we had to pawn some jewellery from Rinas’ mother, and that’s how we started our farming journey.”

Rakthashali, kuruva, thavalakannan, kunju kunju red rice, njavara, kodukanni and pattambi are the traditional rice varieties they have cultivated so far.

Today, the couple has expanded their farm to 20 acres, which produces 15 tonnes of paddy on average annually.

Additionally, they also sell value-added rice products like puttu (logs of rice flour steamed with coconut) powder, flattened rice, etc.

The couple sells kuruva rice for Rs 90 per kg and its rice powder and puttu powder for Rs 140 per kg through their social media platforms.

“The shift wasn’t easy, but I don’t have any regrets. I hated working in air-conditioned offices, and now I’m happy that I get to work in the field,” says Pavithra.