India to take a leading position in production of millets

New Delhi : Union Minister for Agriculture and Farmers’ Welfare Narendra Singh Tomar said that the Government is taking necessary steps to achieve nutrition security along with food security. Inaugurating the two-day “Nutri-Cereal Multi-Stakeholders’ Mega Convention 3.0” at the Hyderabad International Convention Centre (HICC), in the Hydrabad today, the Minister said that it was upon India’s initiative that the United Nations declared year 2023 as the International Year of Millets. Recalling that since ancient times millets have been used in abundance in our country, the Union Minister urged the present generation to understand the importance of nutritious food grains like millets and make it a part of their daily diet.

Narendra Singh Tomar explained that the Central Government has announced various packages under the Agriculture Infrastructure Fund worth Rs.1.5 Lakh Crore to fill the gaps in the agriculture sector. Special Mission was launched for Oil Seeds and Oil palm cultivation from which the farmers in Telangana would greatly benefit as land here is suitable for cultivation of these crops.  Tomar said that to encourage the next generation to invest in agriculture and to ensure profitable yields for the crops, new farm laws have been enacted. The Govt is going to spend Rs.6,850 Crore to set up 10,000 new Farmers’ Producing Organisations (FPOs) and as a result lives of about 86 percent of farmers would be transformed, he added.

Earlier, Narendra Singh Tomar and other dignitaries visited the millets’ food stalls put up by various Start-ups and millet processing units at the venue. The Minister released various publications brought out by the ICAR-IIMR.

Among others, Shri Sanjay Agarwal, Secretary, Department of Agriculture and Cooperation & Farmers’ Welfare, Dr. Sekhar C. Mande, Secretary, Department of Scientific and Industrial Research Dr. Trilochan Mohapatra, Secretary, Department of Agriculture Research and Education & Director General, ICAR, Dr. T. R. Sharma, DDG, ICAR, & DG, CSIR were present.

Later in the day, the Minister of Agriculture & Farmers’ Welfare participated in Tree Plantation and Seed Distribution programs followed by interaction with farmers and biodiversity groups. He inaugurated Glass house Research facilities, Nutri-Cereal Seed Science Centre, Startup facility: Millet Food Processing Units and Flaking Lines. He visited Food Processing Facilities & ICAR-IIMR’s business incubator, the Nutrihub.

The two-day convention is being organised by the ICAR- Indian Institute of Millets Research (IIMR), Hyderabad, the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the UN and the Union Ministry of Agriculture, Government of India. The objective of this event is to prepare blue print of series of events planned to celebrate the “International Year of Millets, 2023” as declared by the United Nations. Delegates from several states such as Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Odisha, Chhattisgarh, Assam, Karnataka, Telangana, Andhra Pradeshand Tamil Nadu attended the event.