Agriculture has come a long way from its humble beginnings, believes Founder and Chairman of Saaraketha Holdings, Prasanna Hettiarachchi, who launched his organic initiative five years ago.
“It’s not about the amude and kattha anymore,” he says. For, technology has changed how we approach things and farming is no exception.
Saaraketha describes itself as “a catalyst that enables rural smallholder farms to embrace sustainable methods of production”. It engages with farms in areas like Kirindiwela, Haputale, Matale and Mahiyangana to bring fresh, organically-grown produce to the consumer through its website (www.saaraketha.com) and now through its newly-opened shop Streat 360 on Ward Place, Colombo 7.
Eating well doesn’t have to be boring, says its founder, highlighting the many different varieties of vegetables and grains produced by the farmers they work with. A quick visit to the website finds a carefully curated selection of products on display, as numerous as they are familiar. Here you can buy vegetables ranging from ladies’ fingers to zucchini and also indulge in fruits like pomegranate and mangosteen. Herbs
such as rosemary and thyme jostle for space alongside hathawariya and gotukola. Grains and spices are also available, as are several varieties of heirloom rice.