The produce was taken from farmers by the procurement team of SOFA for 10 to 15 per cent more than the prevailing market rates. This enhanced the livelihoods of the farmers. The products are sold within 30 km radius of Sirkazhi, and to organic shops in the cities of Tamil Nadu. To ensure the quality of the produce, a few farmers were selected and trained to become internal inspectors.

A farmer who wanted to become a member of SOFA could register with Rs 200, and avail technical support, seeds, etc. Farmers were trained and guided by master trainers in the village until their land was certified organic. Witnessing the success of the organisation, Vedaranyam, a neighbouring coastal agricultural village, joined them. In 2013 they started their own group called Tirumaraikadu Organic Farming Association (TOFA).

A new source of income for community-based women groups

Farming inputs can quickly become a limiting factor in organic farming.