“Organic foods often have much more beneficial nutrients, such as antioxidants, than their conventionally-grown counterparts.”Harsimrat Kaur Badal
This sector has a huge potential. Many farmers are now turning their focus to this sector looking at the price they can fetch through rebranding their product as “organic”.
After many decades of intense war against low productivity, agriculture or has seen a steep rise in production per acre mainly because of the use Of inorganic manure and development of hybrid seeds. Chemical fertilizers generated cheers on the face of farmers. Hybrid seeds resisted pests. A spray of arsenic chemicals to control pests enabled farmers to find an ease. All these finally imperilled the human health, compelling some section to return to the organic methods of farming. Today, this has become a big business. This sector now offers a big opportunity for farmers. Increasing disposable incomes, increasing awareness around health and wellness and increasing acceptability are driving the growth in the organic food segment, which is expected to grow at a CAGR of 10% during the period 2016-21, makes the organic segment bullish for farmers.
Talks in the town is “organic”, a name that fetches premium pricing. “How your food is grown or raised can have a major impact on your mental and emotional health as well as the environment. Organic foods often have much more beneficial nutrients, such as antioxidants, than their conventionally-grown counterparts, “says Harsimrat Kaur Badal. The Union Ministry of Food Processing Industries (MoFPI) is organizing a National Organic Festival with a special focus on women entrepreneurs More than 150 women Entrepreneurs and Self Help Groups (SHGs) from all over India would exhibit their organic products in various segments such as fruit and vegetables, ready to eat products. spices and condiments, honey, cereals, dry fruits, medicinal plants, oil and value-added products like jam, jelly, murabba, chutney etc. The MoFPI and Ministry of women and Child Development (Mo WCD) have joined hands for organising a three-day festival-cum-exhibition with an aim to boost the organic products and to promote women entrepreneurship in the area of production and processing of organic products. The event is themed as Unleashing India’s Organic Market Potential Entrepreneurs and SHGS from 24 states are participating in the festival.
Apart from showcasing the organic products, the event will focus an facilitating business linkages and empowering women entrepreneurs through pre-arranged B2B and B2G meetings. Other softer elements of the exhibition will include, organic food quiz, live culinary sessions, chef speaks, cultural events, nukkad natak etc. Success stories of entrepreneurs also will be highlighted in an exclusive segment. Bath the ministries have signed an MoU to help women entrepreneurs get connected with government financial schemes like Micro units Development and Refinance Agency (MUDRA), Startup India and also meet the compliance needed for being competitive in the global market. Skill development capacity building training programs for women entrepreneurs and SHGs will be organised to facilitate post-harvest management, value addition and new innovations towards enhancing production efficiency as well to impart comprehensive knowledge about various aspects of the supply chain of organic products. Training on the packaging, marketing and innovations on renewable energy will also be imparted to help the producers cater to a broader consumer base. Training on organic certification and FSSAI regulations Will be organized as well to familiarize producers with the regulatory processes. For facilitating business linkages and empowering women entrepreneurs through financial inclusion pre-arranged B2B and B2G meeting will be organized during the exhibition, said the Union Minister.
With the world’s ninth-largest organic agricultural land and the largest number of producers, India is fast growing in the organic food segment. In 2017-18, India produced around 1.70 million MT of certified organic products which included all varieties Of food products like Oilseeds, sugar cane, cereals and millets, cotton, pulses, medicinal plants, tea, fruits, spices, dry fruits, vegetables, coffee etc. On the other hand, the demand for Indian organic food products is on the constant increase worldwide with India exporting organic products worth $515 million in 2017-18 with organic products being exported to USA, European Union, Canada, Switzerland, Australia, Israel, South Korea, Vietnam, New Zealand. Japan etc. The major demands under the organic product category are for Oilseeds, cereals and millets, sugar, fruit juice concentrates, tea, spices, pulses, dry fruits, medicinal plant products etc. As per the Indian Organic Sector – Vision 2025 report, India’s organic business has immense potential to reach the 75,000 crore mark by 2025 from 2,700 crore as estimated in 2015.