Agri Nation Network
New Delhi | 14 July 2017
In the first public appearance after the farmers’ agitation in Madhya Pradesh in which five farmers got killed in police firing, Union Agri Minister Radha Mohan Singh admitted that farmers have not got remunerative prices despite having produced record quantity of food grains in 2016-17.
The Minister was speaking at the National Agriculture Marketing Summit on the theme ‘Regenerating Agriculture through Smart Marketing Solutions – To Double Farmers’ Income’ organized by FICCI and Union Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare. Minister said that farmers have not been getting the corresponding increase in remuneration. The government is aware of the urgent requirement of strengthening market systems to reduce post-harvest losses to enable farmers to tide over both situations of bumper production leading to a glut and abrupt price fall and incidences of less production resulting in the availability of meagre surplus.
The Minister added the strengthening markets to reduce post-harvest losses would ensure farmers get good returns apart from them growing high-value crops, rearing livestock, and working in agro forestry, poultry and fisheries. It would help farmers to tide over both situations of bumper production leading to a glut and abrupt price fall and incidences of less production resulting in the availability of meagre marketable surplus.
Radha Mohan Singh also said that 455 regulated markets from 13 states have joined under the National Agriculture market (e-NAM) and the target is to connect 585 mandis by March 2018. The aim is to bring markets closer to the farms along with appropriate storage, grading and sorting facilities to reduce transportation costs, distress sale as well as the number of intermediaries so that farmers can earn effectively.
Among the other speakers were Rajasthan’s agri minister Prabhu Lal Saini and Shilpa Divekar Nirula, Monsanto’s India region CEO & Chairperson of FICCI National Committee on Agriculture.
On the occasion, a FICCI Knowledge Paper ‘Agriculture Marketing – An Overview and Way Forward’ was released by the dignitaries.