Karnataka aims to be nutri-cereal granary
After having taken the lead in promoting the cultivation of millets, Karnataka is now positioning itself as the main sourcing destination of nutri-cereals and organic produce in the country.
The State is hosting the second edition of the Organics and Millets International Trade Fair in January 2019 with a theme K-Source, celebrating the State of Karnataka as the source for next-gen Smart Foods.
“Through this event, we want to emphasise our positioning of Karnataka as the Organics and Millets Capital of India,” said Karnataka Agriculture Minister, Shivshankar Reddy. The organic agriculture sector in the State was gaining momentum with markets experiencing double-digit growth year-on-year, while millets have emerged on the scene as the nutri-cereals, Reddy said.
Over 250 exhibitors including overseas buyers, sellers, exporters and farmer-producer organisations (FPOs) are expected to participate at the three-day event starting January 18. The Karnataka Agriculture department has roped in the International Competence Centre for Organic Agriculture (ICCOA) as the knowledge partner for the event.
Maheshwar Rao, Principal Secretary Agriculture said the policy push provided by the Karnataka Government has helped promote organic farming in the State. The certified area under organic farming has registered a steady growth in the State from 2,500 hectares to one lakh hectares as on date, while millets are cultivated on around 20 lakh hectares.Developing the market
Organic farmers associations formed under the promotional programmes in the State have been categorised into 15 regional organic federations through which organics and millets processing and marketing activities are being taken up, Rao added. The ultimate objective is to develop an organised market and to popularise organics and millets as ‘Super Foods’, he said.
The previous edition of the event generated business worth ₹107 crore and long-term MoUs worth ₹340 crore were signed with producers and exporters from the State.