Agriculture is the keystone of the Indian economy. Ensuring food security for more than1 billion Indian populations with diminishing cultivable land resource is a herculean task. This necessitates use of high yielding variety of seeds, balance use of fertilizers, judicious use of quality pesticides along with education to farmers and the use of modern farming techniques. It is estimated that India approximately loses 18 percent of the crop yield valued at Rs.900 billion due to pest attack each year. The use of pesticides help to reduce the crop losses, provide economic benefits to farmers, reduce soil erosion and helping ensuring food safety & security for the nation. The Pesticide Management Bill 2008 defines “Pesticide” as, “Any substance or mixture of substances of chemical or biological origin intended for preventing, destroying, attracting, repelling, mitigating or controlling any pest including unwanted species of plants or animal feeds.”
Pesticides Industry: Global Perspective
The world pesticide industry is dominated by nine multinational basic producers from the United States and Western Europe; they account for nearly one-half of the total output. Monsanto, Bayer, DuPont, Dow agro science, BASF, in the top ten is AgrEvo, a joint venture of Hoechst and Schering. Producers in the second tier (annual sales below $1billion) include Sumitomo, Sandoz, FMC, and Rohm & Haas. Expenditures on herbicides accounted for the largest portion of total expenditures –more than 40%, followed by expenditures on insecticides, fungicides and other pesticides respectively.
Pesticides Industry: India
India is one of the most dynamic generic pesticide manufacturers in the world with more than 60 technical grade pesticides being manufactured indigenously by 125 producers consisting of large and medium scale enterprises (including about 10 multinational companies) and more than 500 pesticide formulators spread over the country. The Indian pesticide industry is ranked second in Asia (behind China) and twelfth globally. India produces 90,000 metric tons of pesticides a year. In contrary to the world statistics where herbicide usage dominates the pesticide overall use, in India insecticides dominates the entire use percentage. The monsoons have always been a challenge to the Rs 4500 crore Indian Pesticide market. The Indian Meteorological Department has now declared a deficiency of 29 percent in the south-west monsoon in India .This holds very important and far reaching implications on the agriculture in general and the pesticide industry in particular. The per hectare consumption of pesticide is low in India at 381 grams when compared to the world average of 500 grams. In India, due to the huge presence of off-patent and generic molecules, the pesticide industry is usually low and medium sized in nature. In the case of off-patent molecules, the presence of wide distribution, the strong brand image and superior quality product acts as entry barriers. Due to this nature of the industry, there have been very little investments in R&D. But with the new patent regime since 2005, the discovery of new proprietary molecules and entry of MNC players with strong research and development many new patented products have been launched, for example, Abamectin, Buprofezin, Imidaclopid etc. This makes the need of the Indian companies to invest in R&D as a necessity to survive in competition against the big players. There is also the presence of skewed balance in the crop-wise and state-wise use of pesticides. It is in the favour of Kharif crops- rice and cotton and states like Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka and Punjab. The pesticide industry is also highly dependent on the vagaries of monsoon and the maximum demand for them is in the months of July – September period
TOP 10 NATIONAL COMPANIES DEALING WITH PESTICIDES AND INSECTICIDES Rallis India Limited
Rallis India Limited is engaged in agri business domestic, institutional business,...