While Fonterra’s SROs support farmers like Shantha to grow their income and support their families, they also actively seek to empower entrepreneurial farmers.
As a result of his work with Fonterra, Shantha was introduced to the ‘Rehabilitation of Degraded Agricultural Lands in Kandy, Badulla and Nuwara Eliya Districts in the Central Highlands (CH)’ project, conducted by the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and Global Environment Facility (GEF). This project provided additional funding for the development of his farm - Rs. 70,000.00 for construction of the cattle shed and Rs 35,000.00 to set up a compost production unit for solid waste.
Following the renovation of his shed, Shantha developed an effluent management process based on the circular economy concept for his farm. Guided by the SRO team, his new system was developed to manage effluent and waste water resources in a more efficient and sustainable manner. The waste from his dairy farm was re-purposed as organic fertilizer for his vegetables and fruits cultivation, as well as his tea plantation.
"I believe that dairy farming is also providing a valuable service to the country and is a dignified profession that needs proper management and care. By contributing to this, I am making my contribution to my motherland,” he added.
Now an established and successful dairy entrepreneur, Shantha offers advice to prospective dairy farmers in his village and plays a supportive role among the farmer community.