Post COVID-19: UPL to support local farmers in Central America, says Alok Kumar, GM, UPL Central America and Caribbean Region

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Updated: Jul 15, 2020 3:24 PM

Having global market access to the world’s food basket and focused on high-growth regions, it represents a compelling value proposition for growers, distributors, suppliers and innovation partners in a consolidating market.

Post COVID-19, UPL, Central America, global food systems, LATAM region, agricultural solutions company, Alok Kumar,UPL is globally active through its “Corporate social responsibility / CSR” project.

UPL is a leader in global food systems and with the acquisition of Arysta, becomes one of the top five agricultural solutions companies worldwide. With revenue of approximately USD 5 billion, it has a footprint in 76 countries and sales in 130+ countries. Having global market access to the world’s food basket and focused on high-growth regions, it represents a compelling value proposition for growers, distributors, suppliers and innovation partners in a consolidating market.

Alok Kumar, General Manager, UPL Central America and Caribbean, sub-region under LATAM region based in Costa Rica is an agriculture graduate with an MBA specialising in Marketing & International Business. In this role, his main responsibility is to oversee all the businesses and its operations of UPL in all Central America & Caribbean markets.

Mr Kumar spoke to Financial Express Online’s Huma Siddiqui on supporting farmer, the future of agriculture and more.

Excerpts of the interview:

What do you think is / will be the future of companies likes yours in the post-COVID-era?

Agriculture has been classified as essential segment globally and Post COVID, the situation will remain the same, rather companies like us have more responsibility to support the farmers and value chain to provide safer and healthier food to our ever-increasing population.

Where are your operations based out of?

We have offices in Costa Rica, Nicaragua and Guatemala. Costa Rica is like a regional head office and from here we are servicing all Central American and Caribbean countries. At this stage, we are servicing 11 countries of this sub-region.

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What are your future plans for the Central American markets?

UPL strategy is to keep supporting the local agriculture and keep sustainable growth by offering the new agriculture technologies to our Central American farmers as part of our purpose – OpenAg (Open Agriculture). We are also working on expanding our base to a few more markets in the coming years to provide support with the best products and technology for their growth.

You recently donated Hand Sanitizers. Why did you choose Central America for donating Sanitizers?

UPL is a global organisation supporting the farmers and value chain across different countries. Central America is one of the key business units for UPL in LATAM. With the recent acquisition of Arysta life sciences and Industria Bioquim Corporation in Costa Rica we are able to serve a wide variety of clients with our deep penetration in the distribution channel. Under this difficult global pandemic, Central America is a perfect place to do our part of responsibility which is in line with our corporate social responsibility also.

What is UPL Central America’s Role Post-COVID?

UPL is globally active through its “Corporate social responsibility / CSR” project. Post-COVID, in Central America & Caribbean market we will be very close to farmers and working with all the major farms & farmers to provide them with all the necessary tools for sustainable food production to cater to the global food demand.

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