Over approximately 100 years, from 1950 to 2050, the world’s population is estimated to increase fourfold, from 2.5 billion to 9.7 billion by 2050. Some even predict it could reach 10 billion.
Consequently, the demand for food is expected to increase by 70 percent compared to the present. However, the availability of food resources is becoming increasingly limited.
Although efforts have been made to find natural resources beyond Earth, they have yet to yield significant results. The application of technology and innovation in agriculture to increase food productivity is needed to meet the growing demand for food.
This was stated by the CEO of the Saraswanti Group, Nugroho Hari Hardono, during his speech at the 77th Anniversary Celebration of the UGM Faculty of Agriculture on Wednesday (September 27).
According to Hari Hardono, sound technology and innovation in agriculture can be achieved through excellent human resources efforts. Therefore, he believes that the UGM Faculty of Agriculture has a role in producing top-quality and competent HR.
“The Faculty of Agriculture is responsible for preparing excellent HR in agriculture. Moreover, in the past ten years, this faculty has envisioned developing smart eco-bioproduction,” the CEO explained.
Smart Eco Bio Production, according to Hardono, is a concept of agriculture encompassing smart, environmentally sustainable, precision, and environmentally friendly agriculture, integrating various components, including technology, social and cultural elements, and human resources.
“I think this vision will remain relevant for the next ten years and should be supported by other missions, programs, and strategies. We, as entrepreneurs, are ready to provide feedback on this vision,” said Hardono, who graduated from the UGM Faculty of Agriculture in 1987.
The criteria for excellent agricultural HR, according to Hardono, include having good competence, adaptability and innovation, hard work, resilience, diligence, and always thinking positively and optimistically.
“They should also be non-corrupt and non-manipulative and have leadership skills,” he added.
However, what is equally important, according to Hardono, is that students at the Faculty of Agriculture should have the opportunity to participate in internships to gain new experiences before entering the business world.
“Internships are essential for providing new experiences. When they want to start a business, they can start learning from themselves, be willing to start, and not just have it as a dream,” the CEO said.
“Because there is almost nothing impossible if we are creative. Then, after entering the workforce, maintaining a commitment to the business is very important.”
In her speech, the Rector of Universitas Gadjah Mada, Professor Ova Emilia, MD, congratulated the Faculty of Agriculture on its 77th anniversary.
“The Faculty of Agriculture is one of the oldest faculties at UGM. With the 77th anniversary, we would like to express our gratitude to our seniors and professors who have dedicated themselves and developed the Faculty of Agriculture to its current point with extraordinary work,” Rector Ova Emilia said.
The rector also supported the efforts of the Faculty of Agriculture in achieving food security and self-reliance in Indonesia through the concept of smart eco-bioproduction, which has been implemented by collaborating with farmers and the business world.
“We want to fight for our nation to be self-reliant regarding food,” the rector said.
Smart Eco Bioproduction Vision
The Dean of the Faculty of Agriculture, Dr. Jaka Widada, stated that the Faculty of Agriculture plays an essential and strategic role in addressing the issues of food scarcity and availability due to the increasing population in Indonesia.
“The role of the Faculty of Agriculture will become more strategic in the future, but we can choose strategies and develop excellent HR to face these extraordinary challenges,” he said.
In addition to producing innovation and technology in agriculture, the Faculty of Agriculture also has a responsibility to produce HR capable of supporting policy development and generating technology to solve problems in the field of agriculture.
“At the age of 77, the Faculty of Agriculture remains committed to producing excellent HR for implementing sustainable food production through an understanding of systems and interacting components,” he concluded.
The Chair of the Senate of the Faculty of Agriculture, Professor Irham, said the strategic programs implemented align with the Smart Eco Bioproduction vision, which emphasizes the use of technology in environmentally friendly and high-yield agriculture.
The Committee Chair of the 77th Anniversary Celebration, Ngadiman, added that the Smart Eco Bioproduction vision, the basis of the faculty’s strategic programs, is one of the elements of this year’s anniversary celebration.
Author: Gusti Grehenson