The innovation is to create a niche for the business value chain for the village economy, with an underlying goal of responsible consumption and production. In addition to fair trade sourcing, Nishant Aromas has been focused on incremental and net positive additions at each stage of the value chain. On one hand, the firm actively develops farmers' repertoire of crops to high-income-generating crops with scientific know-how and better agri-practices hand-holding, and on the other hand, the buyback of essential oils distilled by farmers and fractionate per industry-specific requirements to have higher economic yield and lower wastage. This is mutually synergetic economic growth for the cultivator and the business while ensuring a net positive environmental impact.
York University- Schulich School of Business
Nishant Aromas has been integrating incremental innovations at various stages in the fragrance and flavors industry value chain towards profitable business growth with higher economic yields, lower wastage, responsible sourcing and consumption, fair trade practices, growth in producer income, and positive environmental impact.
The first aspect of innovation lies in making use of available natural and geographical resources towards both increasing the cultivator’s income and making a positive environmental impact. Nishant Aromas has been handholding farmers to building income levels not only through fair trade purchasing of produce but also by inherently improving the production capabilities. This included multi-leveled interventions in existing practices including introducing high income generating crops such as aromatic plants which tend to yield 3X or more incomes compared to staples like rice, wheat cultivation in fragmented lands with uneven terrains; multi-tier cropping of fast yielding crop such as lemongrass and long-term high income yielding crops of cinnamon, agarwood, sandalwood, and teakwood with multi-tier cropping and income generation patterns, a concept creating assets for cultivators as well as creating positive ecological systems; handholding with better agri-practices, introduction of higher yield varieties such as moving to the Krishna variety of lemongrass which tends to yield 100 kg oil per acre of harvested crop compared to the traditional variety yield of 10 kg per acre (a 10X growth with same resources); scientifically advanced agricultural practices investment such as drip irrigation and self-sustainable farm practices along with post-harvest capability extensions such as installation of simple distillation plants to yield much higher economic values on sale; and more.
The second aspect of innovation highlights the sustainable goal of producing and consuming responsibly with the highest economic yield and minimum wastage. As is needed for any circular economic model to succeed, Nishant Aromas buys back distilled oil from farmers at fair trade prices and crops from farmers unable to process further. The innovative solution is in fractionating the oil into components for industries according to specific requirements in their facilities before the sale. While the perfumery industry requires the finest and purest component of oil, the biomass and the rejected oil fraction are usable in the toiletries and the homecare industry. This process has not only added value for the business in terms of higher economic yield but also maximized value for farmers who cannot process at this level on a farm and minimized wastage of the produce.
The Konkan region in the Indian subcontinent has uneven terrain and over generations of inheritance, the land has fragmented and seen desertification and land degradation with farm owners not seeing viable economic gains through regular cultivation practices and crops. However, the geographic climatic conditions of heavy monsoon, sufficient sunlight, and naturally fertile land, are conducive to essential oil hardy crop cultivation. The founder of the company is a chemical engineer and as he traveled through the native land, he knew scientific knowledge and better agri-business practices can be leveraged to not only enhance farmers’ incomes but also halt the land degradation in alignment with profitable business opportunities. With his existing business in the flavors and fragrances industry, he sought the opportunity to integrate innovation into the existing value chain while moving towards responsible sourcing and consumption. He found opportunities via scientific collaboration with leading national scientific organizations and quickly realized his current business, chemical engineering expertise, and technological advancements in agri-practices together presented profitable opportunities for business growth as well as an opportunity to enhance farmer income and long-term asset development for cultivators with positive environmental impact.
He has since looked for opportunities to enhance the value in the value chain at every possible stage with underlying goals of restoring and reversing land degradation in the area, reducing poverty and presenting fair trade practices, and minimizing wastage while maximizing economic yield from produce. Nishant Aromas, founded in 1992, is a second-generation family-led business working in line with the said goals and has grown to pan-India sourcing geographically.
Agriculture is the backbone of the Indian rural socio-economic sector and the largest source of livelihood in India. The tropical climate combined with the wide geographic range of terrain and climate combinations across the country enables immense scope for the cultivation of a variety of crops. Traditionally a major segment of the farmer population relies on staple crops such as wheat, rice, and seasonal vegetables for cultivation and sale, which are low income generating especially when the cultivation conditions are not ideal, or the resources are limited and there is a high likelihood of land abandonment or depletion of ecological balance. In such situations, existing capabilities may be enhanced through value-added crop cultivation, scientifically advanced agri-practices, and additional resource building to increase income and sustainability in the long run. This is best achievable with handholding and educating the farmer about short-term and long-term plans and benefits along with the circular economy concept of purchasing the value-added substances at fair trade prices.
Nishant Aromas has successfully enhanced value chains with responsible production and consumption ideology for numerous farmers across the country with economic wealth as well as asset growth through knowledge enhancement, technological innovation introduction, incremental capabilities additions, and fair purchasing practices. The firm has innovated for a mutually synergetic business model actively enabling income growth for farmers and reducing poverty levels through the inventive allocation of existing resources and incremental enhancement of capabilities and handheld famers' developing a model case in the Konkan belt and then replicating it to other regions in the Indian subcontinent. This has gone a long way in combating land desertification and depletion of terrestrial resources and ecological systems, by not only avoiding abandonment but also generating wealth from neglected resources. Additionally, value addition to create market value of unused biomass and oil fractions in an innovative approach not only enhances value for a producer but also moves towards sustainable consumption patterns. The firm sells organic aromatic ingredients, essential oils, natural extracts, and absolutes to buyers worldwide and aims to source through fair trade practices and works towards actively developing farmers' repertoire of crops to high income generating crops, planting trees as assets with long-term economic gains for the cultivator and net positive environmental impact.
The immediate, short-term, and long-term value generation for all stakeholders in the value chain is maximized as well as assets are developed in terms of long-term yielding crops for cultivators, business opportunities for Nishant Aromas, wide product profile, and precisely fractionated oil for industry buyers, and positive environmental net impact constitutes the overall innovation impact.
Today, Nishant Aromas has expanded its sourcing from the Konkan belt to pan-India with different crops according to the natural geographic and climate conditions. They encourage farmers to cultivate different crops or different varieties with the best fit to ecological and climate conditions in different regions. The firm is currently selling aromatic ingredients, essential oils, natural extracts, and absolutes to fragrance and flavor industry buyers worldwide.
The innovation of fractionating the essential oils that are primarily distilled by farmers and purchased by the firm, increases revenue for the firm. Various buyers of fragrance products have various requirements such as the perfumery industry needs the purest and finest component of the oil. The existing capabilities at the firm’s unit, allow them to fractionate and sell the purest component at high prices to the perfumery industry. Meanwhile, the remaining fraction of oil is sold to the home care or toiletry industry for use in domestic products. This is allowing for maximizing revenue opportunities.
Additionally, Nishant Aromas has been growing with avenues and abilities to service the ever-changing business demands worldwide in the fragrance or flavors industry such as recent expansion into new trending crops such as those used in organic supplements or superfoods as global demands change or expanding existing crops by servicing different markets such as lemongrass leaves to green tea manufacturers or fractionated oil component to sanitizer industry.
Constant innovation is helping Nishant Aromas to have a positive net social and environmental impact while making business profits.
Nishant Aromas' innovative interventions have both societal and environmental benefits. Fragmented and depleted lands which were neglected due to terrain or yield deficiencies used to yield an average income of 20-30k INR per harvest when planted with staples such as rice or wheat, this has grown to over 80-90K INR per harvest, an average 3X growth in the same area with lesser maintenance-intensive crops of hardy plants such as lemongrass. Additional asset building and long-term yields for farmers are developed by multi-tier cropping of mutually synergetic crop combinations with long-term yields such as cinnamon with a 3-year yield, and sandalwood with a 5-year yield, this generates multi-levels of income over the years. Scientific know-how, better agri-practices handholding, and capability extension of first-level processing have also increased farmer incomes.
Environmental benefits are seen as the practice aims to actively avoid desertification of land and halting land depletion in the ‘unyielding’ lands being abandoned by cultivators. Additionally, the planting of multi-tiered crops creates an ecosystem depicting man-made forests and increases green cover sustainably using a terrestrial ecosystem. Existing geographical and climatic resources have been used to create ecosystems while preserving existing biodiversity and repleting abandoned land resources.
Ramakant Harlalka, Director
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Mumbai, Pan-India, IN
Business Website: https://nishantaromas.com/
Year Founded: 1992
Number of Employees: 11 to 50
Nishant Aromas Pvt. Ltd. is a part of a family-run business operating in the fragrances and flavor materials industry for over four decades. Nishant Aromas is an ethical and sustainable business aiming to enhance farmer income, create positive ecological impact, and develop long-term assets for cultivators moving towards sustainable consumption and production patterns for mutually synergetic growth. The firm sells organic aromatic ingredients, essential oils, natural extracts, and absolutes to buyers worldwide and aims to source through fair trade practices and works towards actively developing farmers' repertoire of crops to high income generating crops, planting trees as assets with long-term economic gains for the cultivator and net positive environmental impact. The owner being a technocrat himself, one can see value addition to create market value of unused biomass and oil fractions in an innovative approach used by them to create a niche in the business value chain for the village economy.