Myself Gurcharan Singh Mann. 15 years ago, I was an indigent man from the arid hinterland of Bathinda. After being not able to achieve much success with conventional crops, I chose to diversify and try something different. Diversification of crops and allied activities proved to be a boon for me. Today out of 42 acres of land that I own, 10 acres are under orchards, 2.50 acres are under vegetable farming, 10 acres under fish farm and half an acre under Banyan tress. However the real game changer for me was bee keeping. Starting with a modest number of 7 bee boxes, today I have 1762 bee boxes and the total produce is one thousand quintal of honey every year. Due to its superior quality the honey produced is recognized in many countries. My success in bee keeping led to the district administration setting up a honey processing plant in my village. There are 15 below the poverty line people employed in this plant. Hence not only have I been able to achieve success myself, I have been able to provide employment for other people indirectly as well.
In order to truly diversify I did not keep myself limited to only bee keeping. I have an orchard in which I grow Indian plum, guava, blackberries and peach. I am also actively doing organic farming, fishing and dairy farming. Overtime, I have started many allied activities related to bee-keeping such as Bee Box making, Wax Candle making. Since bee-keeping is my primary activity, I have named my farm as Mann Makhi Farm. Apart from honey, I also make other products such as Pickle, Jams, Masala, Turmeric Powder and Chilli Powder. I market all the products under the name ‘Maan’. My farm is surrounded by 5000 different species of trees and the farm comes under Punjab Tourism and anyone can visit the farm and enjoy being close to nature.
Bee-Keeping is done in 1762 boxes and one thousand quintal honey is produced every year.
My fish farm is spread in 10 acres of land.
While Honey is the main product, I also make Chilli Powder, Turmeric Powder, Jams and Pickles.
The main fruits grown in my orchards are Indian Plum, Guava, Blackberries and Peach.
I have also undertaken allied activities such as Bee Box making and Wax Candle Making.
I have also undertaken dairy farming and organic farming. Half an acre of my land is under Banyan Trees.
I have been chosen as the best farmer of the year by Punjab Agriculture University and have been honoured with “Parwasi Bharti Puraskar” instituted by Maninderjit Singh Sandhu, a former PAU teacher, for adopting diversification. I owe all my success to the inputs given by PAU experts and i just implemented whatever they told me. My success mantra has been to cut production costs, marketing the produce myself and minimize dependence on government. I strongly believe that every farmer, big or small should start diversifying and earn more profits.
Village Tungwali, District Bathinda, Punjab