Indian Farmers Fertiliser Cooperative Ltd.

Dr. Udai Shanker Awasthi is the CEO and MD of IFFCO (Indian Farmers Fertiliser Cooperative Ltd), a global leader in the field of fertiliser production with 40,000 member cooperatives. With over five decades of professional involvement, Dr. Awasthi has expertise across various domains including Urea, Chemical fertiliser, Cooperative, Project Management and Leadership. He is also a board member of several other national and global firms. Keeping in line with current professional trends, Dr. US Awasthi keeps updating his LinkedIn profile from time to time. And, if you happen to keep a tab on India’s agricultural sector and how it is progressing, you are sure to see Dr. US Awasthi on the news.

Education and Career

Dr. US Awasthi pursued a degree in Chemical Engineering between the years 1963-1967, from Banaras Hindu University. He then went on to work with Shriram Chemical Industries in Kota in the year 1967. Later in the year 1971, he joined Zuari Agro-Chemicals Ltd., Goa following which he worked at key positions in IFFCO & KRIBHCO, involving the construction of Hazira and Aonla projects, in between 1976-1986.

In the year 1986, Awasthi joined Pyrites, Phosphates & Chemical Limited (PPCL) as its Managing Director and Chairman. He also headed Rashtriya Chemicals & Fertilizers Ltd. (RCF) as its Chairman and Managing Director from April 1991-March 1992. Thereafter, he served as the Chairman of Fertiliser Association of India (FAI), New Delhi during 1994-96. Post that, he was the President of International Fertiliser Industry Association (IFA), Paris from 1997 to 1999.

Dr. US Awasthi joined IFFCO as its Managing Director on February 1, 1993. He has completed twenty-five years of service as IFFCO MD. During Dr. Awasthi’s tenure at IFFCO, the production of fertilizers has grown from 24 lakh tonnes to 86.5 lakh tonnes, and the fertilizer marketing has mounted to one crore and thirty lakh tons. The conceptualization of Oman India Fertiliser Company (OMIFCO), a proposal made by Dr. Awasthi himself, helped the Indian Government save Rs. 23000 crore in Oman, with regards to import. He has also been instrumental in the diversification of IFFCO into seventeen significant subsidiaries across the globe. Dr. US Awasthi’s blog provides glimpses of such significant initiatives he has played a pivotal role in.

Besides fulfilling his role as IFFCO MD, Dr. US Awasthi is also a Director at: -

  • IFFCO-TOKIO General Insurance Company Limited
  • Indian Potash Limited
  • Kisan International Trading FZE

All this information is also available on Dr. US Awasthi’s LinkedIn profile.

Personal Life

Dr. US Awasthi is married to Rekha Awasthi, the eldest of the four children of Sri Lal Shukla, eminent Hindi writer known for his satire. He has two sons, both employed in multinational IT companies abroad. Having lost his father early in life, Dr. Awasthi had been very close to his mother while growing up. He credits his wife’s passion for music and reading habits as influences for his own interests in the fields of art and music.

Initiatives and Contributions

After real-time analysis and ground contact, Dr. US Awasthi initiated the “Kisan Sewa Fund” in the year 2001, under which 2000 houses were built for Gujarat earthquake victims. The fund is still functional in providing healthcare assistance and relief funds to farmers in need during natural calamities.

He also initiated an integrated rural development programme which allocates Rs. 20 lakh for the construction of roads, solar energy units, irrigation system and provision of other civic needs such as electricity and computers, in every village lying in a radius of 20 kilometres of any IFFCO plant.

In collaboration with IFFCO Tokio General Insurance Company (ITGI) and expert contact, Dr. US Awasthi also unveiled a pilot project under the name, “Baarish Bima Yojana”.

Under the guidance of Dr. US Awasthi, IFFCO MD, the organization launched its “Indian Cooperative Digital Platform” in January 2018 with an aim to establish a single, unified platform for serving multiple needs of a farmer. The platform is available in 13 major Indian languages and has memberships of 2.5 crores.

IFFCO Rural Innovation Scholarship which identifies ground-breaking ideas of the rural youth and IFFCO YUVA, a platform dedicated to skill enhancement of the youth are a few more initiatives that the company has taken under the leadership and contact of Dr. Awasthi.

You can find updates about his initiatives at Dr. US Awasthi Blog and synopsis about his many publications on Dr. US Awasthi’s LinkedIn profile.

Awards and Recognition

  • Uttar Pradesh Gaurav Award by Society of Environment & Agricultural Advancement
  • Distinguished alumnus award by Banaras Hindu University
  • Eminent chemical Engineer award by Indian Institute of Chemical engineers
  • Honoured by National Cooperative Union of India (NCUI) in 1997 for distinguished services to the cooperative sector
  • CEMP-Dr. Davidson Frame’ award conferred to him on Dec 11, 2000
  • “Best Chief Executive of the Year 2002“ from Minister for Shipping, Government of India during the Global Corporate Convention-2002
  • Decorated with Golden Jubilee Award by Indian Institute of Chemical Engineers for distinction in leadership and contribution to Chemical Industry

Other Achievements

  • Honorary Fellowship of Indian Institute of Chemical Engineers (IIChE) during Chemcon-2011 at Chennai
  • Conferred with Honorary Doctorate during the 20th Convocation of University of Agricultural Sciences, Dharwad held on Apr 25, 2006
  • Honorary visiting professor of Indian Institute of Technology Delhi
  • Co-authored a book “Fertiliser Industry in India”