Indian Agriculture and Agro-based Industry

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svinayak
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Re: Indian Agriculture and Agro-based Industry

Postby svinayak » 02 Sep 2014 11:28


Every where is uses saffron warriors in his article. The guy must be seeing saffron in every corner under the table.

Must be reall worried.

There is a change coming in and he is not ready for it

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Re: Indian Agriculture and Agro-based Industry

Postby RoyG » 03 Sep 2014 08:54

I believe the EU also heavily regulated GM crop.

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Re: Indian Agriculture and Agro-based Industry

Postby member_28705 » 09 Sep 2014 22:54

This is why we need to conserve and protect indigenous cows of India.
Is the Narendra Modi government's obsession with preservation, improvement and promotion of desi cattle misplaced? This question needs to be considered at from a wider perspective before coming to a definite conclusion.

Admittedly, the white revolution that made India the world's largest milk producer was mostly the outcome of cross-breeding local cows with exotic breeds to increase their milk yield. But this fact alone cannot be a decider. Other factors need to be considered too, such as the overall maintenance cost of cross-bred animals, their fodder and feed requirement, adaptability to local ways of keeping farm animals and susceptibility to common diseases and parasites, among others. Where milk output is concerned, some good Indian strains have also displayed genetic potential to yield 2,000 to 3,000 litres of milk in a 305-day lactation (milking cycle), which does not compare poorly with the productivity of most cross-bred cattle. With well-judged scientific interventions, these animals may be able to compete better with cross-bred cattle without inheriting their limitations.

Besides, Indian cattle are known to possess several extremely useful genetic traits that make them unique in some respects. Animal breeders from across the world have historically been utilising these genes to impart sturdiness and disease tolerance to their cattle populations. Remember, the well-known Brahman breed found widely in the US, Argentina, Brazil and some other countries has been derived from Indian cattle strains.

Animal husbandry experts feel that the indiscriminate cross-breeding of the kind that has been going on for the past several decades is not a healthy trend. This has adversely impacted the genetic purity of desi strains. "The distinct biodiversity of our cattle breeds has been diluted due to changing breeding policies and adoption of a few improver breeds in our cattle improvement programme," says K M L Pathak, deputy director-general (animal sciences) of the Indian Council of Agricultural Research. Today, less than 12 per cent of all cattle in India qualify to be categorised into 44 different well-marked populations, including 37 registered cattle breeds. The rest are nondescript animals.

A goat expert from the Makhdoom (Mathura)-based Central Institute for Research on Goats (CIRG) also endorses this viewpoint. "Instead of cross-breeding, it is better to bring about improvement through selective breeding to produce high quality males and females," maintains CIRG principal scientist Pramod K Rout. With unsystematic cross-breeding, we may lose some unique gene sequences that may be useful in future. Experience from the Indo-Swiss animal improvement project in the early 90s also showed that selective breeding in pure-bred goats was more effective and profitable than cross-breeding for scaling up productivity. Buffaloes are the best case in point where the performance-based selection of animals has helped evolve the world's best breeds in the Indian subcontinent.

The latest Livestock Census (2012) data released last week bears out the threat that rampant cross-breeding poses to home-grown livestock. While the count of exotic and cross-bred cattle has spurted in the last five years by nearly 35 per cent, from 14.4 million to 19.42 million, that of indigenous ones has remained almost static at around 48 million. With business as usual, a downturn in the proportion of animals belonging to recognised domestic breeds cannot be ruled out.

Keeping this in mind, the recent launch of the Rashtriya Gokul Mission for conserving and developing indigenous breeds in a systematic manner is a welcome step. Apart from enhancing the inherent productivity of local livestock strains, the mission will help set up indigenous cattle centres near metropolitan cities, raise elite breeding stocks, encourage the selection of animals on the basis of field performance and pedigree, and promote the formation of cattle breeders' societies.

Hopefully, the institutions created under this mission will not be run like many of the existing 4,000-odd goshalas (cow care centres) spread across the country. Only some goshalas maintain indigenous cattle herds with proper breeding plans. Others are incapable of doing so due to the lack of wherewithal and expertise. Worthwhile cattle conservation effort is confined chiefly to public sector institutions, notably the Karnal-based National Bureau of Animal Genetic Resources (read animal gene bank), animal research institutes, agricultural universities and some organised cattle farms. Technical collaboration between these bodies and well-managed goshalas can increase the yield potential of indigenous cattle without sacrificing their desirable genetic traits.


http://www.business-standard.com/articl ... 188_1.html

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Re: Indian Agriculture and Agro-based Industry

Postby Vipul » 11 Sep 2014 04:48

Will India pip China in cotton output?

Days after the domestic traders’ body forecast India to pip China as the world’s largest cotton producer, the International Cotton Advisory Council (ICAC) has sought to put a reality check, reports Banikinkar Pattanayak in New Delhi. According to the latest ICAC report, although the two countries would “vie for the title of the largest producer of cotton”, China could produce 6.4 million tonnes in 2014-15, while India’s output will likely trail at 6.3 million tonnes.

While the Cotton Association of India (CAI) says its prediction of 6.73 million tonnes for India is still “conservative”, the ICAC forecast pointed to the big gap in productivity in the two countries. While China will likely produce 1,500 kg per hectare in 2014-15, India’s productivity is put at just 536 kg, lower than 933 kg in the US — the world’s third-largest producer and biggest exporter — and even below the expected average global yield level of 750 kg.So despite having just 4.2 million hectares under the crop in 2014-15, China's cotton production would be marginally higher than that of India, where planting has hit a near-record level of 11.80 million hectares.

This brings to the fore the point that despite the introduction of Bt cotton in India around a decade ago, which pushed productivity from 302 kg per hectare in 2002-03, much needs to be done to catch up with China. The silver lining is the area available for planting in India is higher than in China. So if better farm practices are adopted and a solid irrigation network is established in Maharashtra — where the yield per hectare (369 kg) trailed Gujarat's 758 kg and all-India average of 565 kg in 2013-14 — cotton output will rise substantially. In 2013-14, despite accounting for 33% of the total area under cotton, the state's share in overall production was 21.5%, according to Cotton Corporation of India data.

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Re: Indian Agriculture and Agro-based Industry

Postby govardhanks » 16 Oct 2014 14:40

akash_k wrote:How does exporting harvest lead to rare plants being gone forever. if i export Basmati rice, it isn't gone forever.
Or am I missing something?


Sorry for the late reply, yes rare medicinal which grow seasonally in India are under threat, in a near by village I have seen people selling these herbs to china, they get some handsome INR per kg.
Basmati rice is not a rare plant, it is well known to us, its seeds are preserved in seed banking, including embryos. Which is not the case with rare and regional medicinal plants. Hope I answered it.

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Re: Indian Agriculture and Agro-based Industry

Postby govardhanks » 16 Oct 2014 14:45

svinayak wrote:

Every where is uses saffron warriors in his article. The guy must be seeing saffron in every corner under the table.

Must be reall worried.

There is a change coming in and he is not ready for it


Sir, the question is why we should give chance for such things or such people to write anything they wish, be dharmic and be scientific also . You cannot carry soil of nuclear waste, for whatever reasons around living population.
Last edited by govardhanks on 16 Oct 2014 17:57, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Indian Agriculture and Agro-based Industry

Postby govardhanks » 16 Oct 2014 14:49

RoyG wrote:I believe the EU also heavily regulated GM crop.


Yes sir, my point was that, we can test nuclear bomb, we can test all horrible medicines on humans and animals,
but why cannot we test GM crops?
What is wrong in doing field test for 5 years period on a controlled and ecological isolated place.
The day we deny science, is the day we are going blind into future.
Similar is the case with Human cloning, until and unless we do it, we have no reason to say it is harmful. Everyone shouted at Large Jardon collider experiment that it will bring about destruction of earth , will generate black holes, what not!! what happened after that we all know.
For those who eat lot of potato, should know that it was introduced by Europeans from Peru to world, it was not until the detailed nutritional study by French physician Antoine Parmentier, it became famous all over world.

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Re: Indian Agriculture and Agro-based Industry

Postby RoyG » 16 Oct 2014 22:55

govardhan wrote:
RoyG wrote:I believe the EU also heavily regulated GM crop.


Yes sir, my point was that, we can test nuclear bomb, we can test all horrible medicines on humans and animals,
but why cannot we test GM crops?
What is wrong in doing field test for 5 years period on a controlled and ecological isolated place.
The day we deny science, is the day we are going blind into future.
Similar is the case with Human cloning, until and unless we do it, we have no reason to say it is harmful. Everyone shouted at Large Jardon collider experiment that it will bring about destruction of earth , will generate black holes, what not!! what happened after that we all know.
For those who eat lot of potato, should know that it was introduced by Europeans from Peru to world, it was not until the detailed nutritional study by French physician Antoine Parmentier, it became famous all over world.


I agree. Test them.

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Re: Indian Agriculture and Agro-based Industry

Postby nandakumar » 17 Oct 2014 16:25

Govardhan
The official policy of the Government of India is that any experiment involving genetic engineering requires the approval of the Genetic Engineering Approvals Committee, an arm of the Government. This comiittee has refused approve pending applications. It is for the Government of the day to modify such offical policy as exists. Since the Government enjoys the support of the majority of memebers of the Lok Sabha, it has to be presumed that the general public support the policy of banning field trials- even if the risks are minimal or even non-existent. True, this was not an issue in the recently concluded general elections. That said, you can be certain that no political party is ever going to fight an election on the issue of permitting field trials in genetically modified seeds.

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Re: Indian Agriculture and Agro-based Industry

Postby govardhanks » 19 Oct 2014 13:20

The official policy of the Government of India is that any experiment involving genetic engineering requires the approval of the Genetic Engineering Approvals Committee, an arm of the Government. This comiittee has refused approve pending applications. It is for the Government of the day to modify such offical policy as exists. Since the Government enjoys the support of the majority of memebers of the Lok Sabha, it has to be presumed that the general public support the policy of banning field trials- even if the risks are minimal or even non-existent. True, this was not an issue in the recently concluded general elections. That said, you can be certain that no political party is ever going to fight an election on the issue of permitting field trials in genetically modified seeds.


Saab, Unless it is scientifically proved it will remain as unexplored field. Actually in BJP election manifesto it is mentioned "Genetically Modified (GM) foods will not be allowed without full scientific evaluation on its long-term effects on soil, production and biological impact on consumers"
Ref- http://www.bjp.org/images/pdf_2014/full_manifesto_english_07.04.2014.pdf

There are two functionally opposing large international bodies- one supporting GMO (basically International seed corporations) and the other not supporting GMO (few Scientists, Foreign funded NGOs, etc.,).

I understand until and unless it becomes a necessity , nobody will actually look into it. But Modi govt did approve some GMO crops
http://www.dnaindia.com/india/report-21-new-varities-of-genetically-modified-crops-approved-for-field-trials-by-narendra-modi-government-2002487

The controversy here other than GMO, is availability of seeds, so Multi National Companies control seeds and its price, which brings the question are we going get something similar to global crude oil price control? may be

When the field trails are over, we might get to know about feasibility of GMO crops.
http://indiagminfo.org/

Also recent news from Forbes magazine talks about trillion meal study
http://www.forbes.com/sites/jonentine/2014/09/17/the-debate-about-gmo-safety-is-over-thanks-to-a-new-trillion-meal-study/
The authors also found no evidence to suggest any health affect on humans who eat those animals. No study has revealed any differences in the nutritional profile of animal products derived from GE-fed animals. Because DNA and protein are normal components of the diet that are digested, there are no detectable or reliably quantifiable traces of GE components in milk, meat, and eggs following consumption of GE feed.

I hope I have put a neutral view post.

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Re: Indian Agriculture and Agro-based Industry

Postby nandakumar » 20 Oct 2014 08:53

The Government led by Modi did initially permit field trials by public institutions. But later on pressure from Swadeshi Jagran Manch withdrew the permission. So right now the stand of Modi-led Govt is not different from the UPA regime. I am with you on the point that a ban on GM research is unfortunate. It denies the public research institutions to come up with their own alternatives even as MNCs develop their own. The latter will eventually find a way to prise open the Indian market. A case in point is BT cotton. Farmers have adopted it wholesale despite green peace and Vandana Shiva.
The link below gives an objective analysis of the GM crop debate.
http://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2014/ ... s-of-doubt

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Re: Indian Agriculture and Agro-based Industry

Postby Theo_Fidel » 20 Oct 2014 18:09

These worthies should look at what humans have genetic engineered with plants for instance.
Here is the Humble watermelon. Native origin Namibia. Bred to such a degree it is no longer even similar to the original.
Yet there is resistance to using a bacteria DNA to imprint on Plant DNA.

Image

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Re: Indian Agriculture and Agro-based Industry

Postby nandakumar » 20 Oct 2014 20:48

Theo_Fidel wrote:These worthies should look at what humans have genetic engineered with plants for instance.
Here is the Humble watermelon. Native origin Namibia. Bred to such a degree it is no longer even similar to the original.
Yet there is resistance to using a bacteria DNA to imprint on Plant DNA.

Image

Wow! Your one of a kind Theo. That is what makes this forum so special, occasional skirmishes notwithstanding!

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Re: Indian Agriculture and Agro-based Industry

Postby nandakumar » 21 Oct 2014 16:06

Growing potatos in salty marsh lands as this Guardian article says, can be done.
http://www.theguardian.com/science/2014 ... revolution
Should be useful in the coastal areas of Gujarat in winter.

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Re: Indian Agriculture and Agro-based Industry

Postby Vipul » 27 Oct 2014 18:01

Two scientists, two blockbuster crop varieties.

When A K Singh was appointed head of the Indian Agricultural Research Institute’s (IARI) Genetics Division last month, he got a congratulatory SMS from Baljeet Singh Virk, a farmer from Bathinda in Punjab, for becoming the top man at the “jenatics department”.The message went on to say that Singh had not just given farmers paise or rupees, but had made them “lakhpatis”.

Virk’s praise wasn’t without reason. Singh is the chief breeder of Pusa-1509, a basmati rice variety that farmers have grown on almost 5 lakh hectares this kharif season, compared to 5,000 hectares last year.

Pusa-1509’s advantage is its yield. The average 25 quintals paddy per acre from the variety are way above 10 quintals from traditional basmati varieties such as Taraori and Dehraduni. It surpasses even the 20 quintals for Pusa-1121, which now accounts for over half of India’s two-million-plus hectares sown with basmati.

Deepak Pental, professor of genetics and a former vice-chancellor of Delhi University, said Pusa-1509 represented “a very fine example of what publicly funded farm research can really do”.

No less a success story in public breeding is HD-2967, a wheat variety that was released for commercial cultivation in September 2011. In the 2013-14 rabi season, this variety — bred by IARI scientists led by its Joint Director (Research) K V Prabhu — was grown in about six million hectares.No variety or hybrid of any crop has ever covered such a large area in as short a time; even Bt cotton took five years from 2002 to 2007 to cross six million hectares in India.

Pritam Singh from Urlana Khurd in Panipat’s Madlauda tehsil has harvested 27 quintals per acre with Pusa-1509 this time. Major Singh of Barsat, a village in Gharaunda tehsil of Karnal, has managed 29.5 quintals.

Both Pusa-1121 and Pusa-1509 have lower plant heights than the 160 cm levels for traditional basmatis, making them more responsive to fertiliser application. “The Pusa-1509 plant is only 80 cm tall, below even the 120 cm for Pusa-1121,” says A K Singh, who was also associated with the breeding of Pusa-1121, that generated three-fourth of India’s $4.9 billion earnings from basmati exports in 2013-14.

But yield isn’t the sole attraction. “Pusa-1509 matures within 120 days. Since transplantation can be done after monsoon arrival, I have to give only 10-11 irrigations, whereas it is 15-16 for Pusa-1121 that grows over 145 days,” said Pritam Singh.

Anil Mittal, chairman of KRBL Ltd, India’s largest basmati exporter, however, noted that Pusa-1509 paddy was currently selling at Rs 2,500-2,600 a quintal, below the Rs 2,900-3,000 for Pusa-1121. This, he felt, had to do with the higher percentage of broken kernels on milling.“The head rice (i.e. unbroken kernels) recovery is only 47-48 kg from every quintal of parboiled Pusa-1509 paddy, while 53-54 kg for Pusa-1121. But from the farmer’s standpoint, the five quintals extra yield and 25 days less duration (in maturing) more than compensates for any lower price realisation,” Mittal said.

Pritam Singh estimated the total production cost for Pusa-1509 at about Rs 21,500 per acre. Given revenues of Rs 2,500/quintal, it translates into a profit of Rs 40,000-plus an acre.Prabhu attributed HD-2967 wheat variety’s fast spread partly to farmers’ search for an alternative to PBW-343, a workhorse wheat released in 1993 that until recently occupied over nine million hectares.

“This was a popular variety, but had developed high susceptibility to yellow and leaf rust fungal diseases, affecting its yield. HD-2967 is resistant to these as well as Ug99, a deadly African race of stem rust already prevalent in central India,” said Prabhu.HD-2967 is also the first wheat variety bred with what is called ‘adult plant resistance’. This was done through incorporation of ‘minor’ genes, which on their own may not protect a plant against rust attacks, but are effective in combination.

“Our idea was to breed a variety that may show low levels of disease susceptibility in early growth stages, but develop resistance at the adult (post-flowering) phase when the plant is most vulnerable to yield reduction,” Prabhu added.

Shamsher Singh Sandhu, a farmer with 35 acres in Mattdadu village in Dabwali tehsil of Sirsa, said HD-2967 gave 25 quintals per acre of wheat and an equal quantity of bhusa (straw). “With PBW-343, I wasn’t getting more than 20-22 quintals. The quality of bhusa too wasn’t as good.” The best endorsement for HD-2967 comes from Balbir Jharia. The farmer with 30 acres in Dharamgarh in Punjab’s Fatehgarh Sahib district has two mobile phone connections with numbers ending in ‘2967’. He has even named his house ‘2967’. Last year, Jharia sold 600 quintals of seeds of this variety for Rs 12 lakh.

One indicator of the change that Pusa-1509 and HD-2967 have brought to agriculture in Punjab and Haryana is lease rents. “Two years ago, I was paying Rs 35,000 to lease an acre for growing two crops a year. Today, it is Rs 60,000,” said Pritam Singh, who farms 107 acres, including 77 acres taken on lease.

The fact that he is willing to pay the amount shows there is some money in farming now.

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Re: Indian Agriculture and Agro-based Industry

Postby Kakkaji » 22 Nov 2014 07:54

Farmers turn to start-ups like Ecozen and ColdStar for cold storage solutions

"The product works on solar power and uses thermal storage as the energy back-up. The cost of the solution depends on the commodity to be stored. Normally, a fruit farmer should be able to recover the cost within three years and earn at least twice of what he is currently earning,"

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Re: Indian Agriculture and Agro-based Industry

Postby sanjaykumar » 22 Nov 2014 11:01

Are these cultivars leaking across the border? Is Pakistan benefiting from indian labour?

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Re: Indian Agriculture and Agro-based Industry

Postby SBajwa » 09 Dec 2014 02:25

http://www.tribuneindia.com/news/punjab ... 15624.html

Lethal uranium found in soil samples
BARC reports toxic metals in fertilisers as firms avoid costly decontamination process

Bharat Khanna
Tribune News Service

Bathinda, December 7
The Bhabha Atomic Research Centre (BARC) has found high uranium content in diammonium phosphate and single superphosphate fertilisers that do not undergo the costlier decontamination process during production. The conclusion was reached after testing of soil and fertiliser samples.
The Environmental Assessment Division of BARC sent a report on samples of DAP (diammonium phosphate) and single superphosphate in March 2012. It tested soil samples taken from areas where these fertilisers were being used from the past thirty years. The samples were sent to BARC for testing by the Department of Soil and Science Punjab Agricultural University (PAU), Ludhiana. However, the report was not made public.
As per the report sent by BARC to PAU, uranium concentration was found 91.77 ppm in DAP and 2.92 ppm in single superphosphate.
Experts say uranium can be removed by adopting a decontamination process, but private companies producing fertilisers usually avoid this costly process.
NGO Kheti Virasat chairman Chandra Prakash, an assistant professor in environment science at Punjab Technical University, Kapurthala, said, "Due to the use of such fertilisers, uranium content enters the soil and then contaminates groundwater. The government should make it mandatory for fertiliser units to adopt decontamination process to remove uranium from the produce. Our next survey will cover Haryana, Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh where farmers do not depend as much on pesticides and fertilisers as their counterparts in Punjab do. The people of Punjab are consuming the highest content of uranium. It has been a leading cause behind cancer cases. The heavy metal content found in Punjabis is 23 times more than Europeans."
"Uranium is slightly radioactive in its natural state. But it is toxic for humans, especially when it gets into drinking water. It can affect blood, bones and kidneys. Children are more affected by uranium content in drinking water as their fluid intake is two to three times that of adults (relative to their body weight)," Chander Prakash said.
Agriculture Development Officer, PAU Regional Centre, Bathinda, Dr Dharampal Singh said, "There is no mention of the permissible limit for any heavy metal, including uranium, in fertilisers. These should not be present in fertilisers. I had never heard about the presence of uranium or such metals in fertilisers."
Head of Soil Science Department, PAU, Dr Harmeet Singh said, "Yes BARC had sent us a report on the presence of uranium in fertilisers. However, there was nothing to worry about as the content was very less even in cases of prolonged use of DAP."
PAU Vice-Chancellor Baldev Singh Dhillon said, "As per my knowledge, there is no such report. No such test has been conducted by the PAU. If uranium is present in fertilisers, it's harmful. I will check it with the Department of Soil."
NGO Kheti Virasat got tests conducted on cancer patients and found that toxic content was 23 times more in Punjabis than Europeans. Nail and hair samples of 49 cancer patients and 50 other persons were tested at Micro Trace Minerals Laboratory, Hersbruck, Germany.
In 2009, the Baba Farid Institute of Medical Science and Health, Faridkot, got similar tests conducted on mentally retarded children from the same laboratory. The survey was conducted in 12 villages of Bathinda and Muktsar, besides Faridkot city.
About 16 patients were taken from Faridkot city while six each were taken from Shekpur, Jhajjal and Giana villages and three each from Malkana and Bhagwanpura villages of Bathinda district. Patients were also selected from some other areas.

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Re: Indian Agriculture and Agro-based Industry

Postby Haresh » 27 Dec 2014 00:41

Israel offers expertise to triple India’s milk production, boost exports

There is a great potential for India’s milk exports, but it is still in its infancy and surpluses are occasional.

https://www.thedollarbusiness.com/israe ... f-economy/

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Re: Indian Agriculture and Agro-based Industry

Postby Suraj » 22 Jan 2015 05:02

The grain mountain
The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) has approved a revised buffer stocking policy for foodgrain which, even while requiring holding of higher strategic food reserves than stipulated earlier, nevertheless provides a window for shedding excess stock - through domestic sales and exports. The central grain pool, according to the new norms, should have 41.1 million tonnes of rice and wheat on July 1 and 30.7 million tonnes on October 1 every year. These limits were, respectively, 32 million tonnes and 21 million tonnes earlier. The stocking norms for the quarters beginning January 1 and April 1 have been altered only marginally.

The food ministry has been authorised to dispose of any surplus stock through open sale in the domestic market or export without seeking the Union Cabinet's approval. This marks a welcome departure from the earlier practice of maintaining excessive, unmanageable and fiscally burdensome food inventories created by purchasing all the grain on offer at the minimum support price. Under this system, the government had ended up buying, on average, 33 per cent of the rice and 30.4 per cent of the wheat produced in the country between 2008-09 and 2013-14. Besides bloating the food subsidy bill to unsustainable levels - the carrying cost of each tonne of foodgrain works out to nearly Rs 5,000 at current prices - this had seriously distorted the country's food market. The new policy can iron out these distortions, restore the relevance of private trade in the food sector and rein in food inflation by augmenting grain supplies in the open market.

The old buffer limits were fixed almost a decade ago when the requirement of foodgrain for the public distribution system (PDS) was lower. However, after the enactment of the National Food Security Act, 2013, which seeks to provide 5 kg of foodgrain every month to some two-thirds of the country's entire population at highly subsidised rates, this requirement has risen sharply. When this law becomes fully operational - at present it is being implemented only in 11 states - the annual foodgrain requirement for PDS and welfare schemes may swell to over 61 million tonnes. This apart, changes in the food stocking policy and an increase in the size of the needed grain reserves have become necessary also to enable India to show better compliance with the public stockholding norms for food security laid down by the Agreement on Agriculture (AoA) under the World Trade Organisation (WTO). New Delhi is also seeking an amendment in the grain stockholding and food subsidy caps stipulated in the AoA.

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Re: Indian Agriculture and Agro-based Industry

Postby ramana » 25 Jan 2015 04:18

I notice that basmati rice in US is no longer as flavorful as before years;Tilda, Royal, Adora, Costco.

Could this be due to the Pusa-1509 variety?

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Re: Indian Agriculture and Agro-based Industry

Postby Kakkaji » 25 Jan 2015 07:03

The Big Picture: A new churning

Long, detailed article about the new revolution in milk production that is happening in Gujarat.

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Re: Indian Agriculture and Agro-based Industry

Postby nawabs » 28 Jan 2015 03:53

Soon, farmers can insure against losses from natural disasters

http://www.business-standard.com/articl ... 405_1.html
The Centre is devising an insurance product for farmers that will guarantee to make good their loss in income from natural calamities for at least seven years. For crops with minimum support prices (MSPs), the loss in income will be based on the MSP; for others, it will be calculated based on the average market price of the commodity for the past seven years. If states do not want to avail of the central scheme, they can frame individual income insurance schemes, depending on their geographical and agro-climatic needs. The proposed scheme, to be called the National Agriculture Income Insurance Scheme, will be run on a pilot basis from 2015-16.

“The farm income insurance scheme will have two components — price-based insurance and yield-based insurance. A committee comprising senior agriculture officials and representatives from state governments will be formed to look into the suggestions of state governments to prepare a national insurance product,” Agriculture Minister Radha Mohan Singh told reporters at the end of a day-long meeting with state officials. Currently, the Department of Agriculture runs two crop insurance schemes, one of which is weather-based. Guarantee compensation for loss of yield in case of natural disasters but do not make good the loss in income. “The Centre will give the same financial assistance to states that want to have their own income insurance scheme as it does for other crop insurance schemes,” Singh said. Haryana and Uttarakhand have decided to devise individual income insurance schemes. For crop insurance schemes, 75 per cent of the premium is borne by the central and state governments, while farmers bear the rest.

In India, crop insurance is provided by state-run Agriculture Insurance Company and 10 private insurers, including ICICI Lombard, HDFC Ergo and Iffco Tokio.

According to Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India guidelines, at least six per cent of the premium should be from crop insurance products for all insurers.

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Re: Indian Agriculture and Agro-based Industry

Postby nawabs » 28 Jan 2015 13:19

The HLC report busts FCI myths

http://www.financialexpress.com/article ... ths/35724/
The report of the high level committee (HLC) for restructuring of the Food Corporation of India (FCI) demolishes some of the myths that have perpetuated in the national psyche. The common perception that farmers are enormously benefiting by MSP procurement of wheat and rice by government agencies is negated by the HLC observation (determined on the basis of 70th NSSO—National Sample Survey Office) that only 5.8% agricultural households are currently beneficiary from this system. It, inter alia, implies that the FCI has outlived its procurement related utility and requires resurrection.

The operational efficiency of the FCI is “dis-economy of scales”—that with rising volumes of procurement and distribution, costs are ascending and not descending. The cost of handling wheat is 61% and rice is 40% of MSP in 2014-15 (average 50%), as against 48% and 28% (average 38%), respectively, in 2009-10. The leakage percentage of grains of about 47% through the public distribution system (PDS) is again evidenced.

The constraints in the quantum and quality of storage are well highlighted. The hoarding of grains far in excess of buffer norms (see graph) either due to imprudent policies or inaction or missing export opportunities has blocked thousands of crores of rupees every year, leading to wastage and high inflation. These conclusions are supported by robust data. HLC’s advice in some cases is extremely critical, others cosmetic and some are missing.

HLC recommends shelving of the National Food Security Act (NFSA) of 2013 in states where its implementation has yet to commence; reduce coverage to 40% of population to stem the tide of climbing subsidies (see graph) and introduce income transfer mode through the Jan-Dhan Yojana. Shanta Kumar, the chairman of the HLC, briefed the media that the BJP’s endorsement to the NFSA in the UPA’s regime was driven by the politics of “vote convenience” prior to the general elections. In fact, 90% subsidy on 5 kg grains per person per month for 67% of population under the NFSA will amplify PDS diversions (beyond 47%), for which the FCI will continue to be blamed. If NFSA is allowed to continue, the FCI will become a bottomless pit of subsidies because MSP will be revised upward annually and release price will remain unchanged at R3/2/1 formula.

The report profoundly provokes the NDA to overhaul framework of the NFSA. Savings in handling cost combined with reduction in mandi taxes, etc, can significantly reduce subsidies. Contentious WTO subventions can be set right by reinventing the NFSA.

The concern of the HLC on high statutory and arbitrary levies (mandi taxes, etc) by the states, ranging from 3.6% (Rajasthan) to 14.5% (Punjab), is also crucial for levelling out market prices and for active participation of the private sector. This is extremely challenging for the Union government till such time the GST issue remains unresolved. How state governments, the Punjab government and BJP-ally Shiromani Akali Dal will react at political level needs to be watched.

Another view of the HLC is to let the states, which are adept in wheat and paddy procurement, such as Punjab, Haryana, Madhya Pradesh, Andhra Pradesh, Chhattisgarh and Odisha, undertake purchasing operations through their own nominated agencies. In 2014-15, the FCI share in wheat and paddy procurement is 12.61% and 1.41%, respectively (FCI website). The rest of the acquisition is done by state government agencies (SGAs). The FCI has, thus, substantially exited itself out of direct procurement and moved over to procurement by SGAs. The committee, thus, endorses the direction already in practice and gives a cosmetic touch to the existing policy profile.

Furthermore, the HLC suggests that the FCI may activate itself in regions such as eastern Uttar Pradesh, Bihar and West Bengal, Assam, etc, that is contrary to the process of mitigation of the FCI’s direct engagement. When the report maintains that the FCI’s procurement system has outlived its utility, then to replicate the same scheme for marginal farmers in such areas is contradiction to the conclusion that MSP benefits to a minuscule percentage of farmers.

Food policies and politics are intimately interlinked. The idea of abandoning the FCI’s procurement from the two most productive states of India—Punjab and Haryana—can have discordant overtones especially from the Jat community who owe allegiance to the Shiromani Akali Dal. Its implementation, though cosmetic, may be controversial.

The food ministry has already reduced levy rice obligation from 75% to 25% and the HLC view of zero levies is a further progression to that very prescription. Likewise, refusing/limiting procurement from the states gifting bonuses too is in line with the policy adopted by the food ministry.

Giving six months’ ration to beneficiaries at the end of each procurement season is debatable. Upfront one-time payment may be difficult for consumers. The percentage of leakages in the market will also escalate much beyond 47%.

The page 21 of the report reveals that the FCI will buy rice only from the state governments. Millers will be totally excluded. The onus of any mismanagement of conversion of paddy into rice through millers devolves upon the SGAs. The FCI may be out of the noose of negligence—but it amounts to shifting the problem from the FCI to the SGAs. The financing of paddy operation by the government agencies should have been dispensed and direct rice procurement would have been the right step forward. There could be procedural issues in arriving at the rice price—but that is what is missing in the report.

The report does mention of lack of alertness and bureaucratic dithering in undertaking grain exports from the FCI stocks. However, it could have given some guidance on the trigger points on this issue. Just as essentiality of imports is activated once stocks fall below buffer norms, what should be the “excess”—when stocks exceed the buffer limits for initiating exports on the basis of MSP plus freight costs and handling expenses at ports or any other formula? Of course, such an “excess” would have accounted for the domestic necessities. This could have strengthened the hands of the food and commerce ministry for exploiting the niche opportunities in international trade with extremely short-time horizons.

The HLC has not commented on the trifurcation of the FCI into three distinct agencies—procurement, distribution and storage companies—as suggested by the Prime Minister during the election campaign. Another step that will transform the FCI functioning will be the least or minimal usage of gunny or PP bags so that modern silo/hopper wagons system is introduced and handling shifts to “machine back” from “human back” to which the HLC has referred. Now let us watch to what extent the food ministry, PMO or states accept the wisdom of the HLC.

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Re: Indian Agriculture and Agro-based Industry

Postby Vayutuvan » 29 Jan 2015 02:45

ramana wrote:I notice that basmati rice in US is no longer as flavorful as before years;Tilda, Royal, Adora, Costco.

Could this be due to the Pusa-1509 variety?


Good catch there. I also had been wondering about this for the past 4-5 years. We use sona masoorie only but for pulao/fried rice/masala khichDi.

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Re: Indian Agriculture and Agro-based Industry

Postby SaiK » 29 Jan 2015 02:51

after mid-life crisis, i stayed away from any major rice base, except some brown organic ones.. basmati has become extinct for me.

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Re: Indian Agriculture and Agro-based Industry

Postby ramana » 08 Feb 2015 21:51

Interesting use of Rice Hulls. As India is a largest rice producer it could kick start a new product innovation while saving forests

Introduction to Polymeric Composites with Rice Hulls By Chris Defonseka
2014 | 208 Pages | ISBN: 1909030791 |



There are many types of materials being used for composites, but polymers have played a major part as composite materials due to their versatility and seemingly endless possibilities. Constant research and development has enabled polymers to establish themselves as an essential part of daily life by replacing traditional materials over the years. Polymer composites with biomasses have been the trend for some time now, with wood plastic composites (WPC) probably the most common. However, a new and exciting field of polymer composites are opening up: polymeric composites with rice hulls. These composites will have better properties than current polymer composites and provide a wider range of end applications from domestic to industrial to building construction. Also, their ability to achieve aesthetically pleasing finishes similar to natural wood veneers and better structural strength will provide an ideal substitute for natural wood. Moreover, these composites can be made available in pellet forms and can be used in injection moulding and other plastic processes to replace traditional resins at lower cost. I have over 40 years' hands-on experience in local and international industrial fields. After much research on this subject, I present sound practical knowledge of all aspects of polymeric composites with rice hulls. This book imparts detailed and valuable information from the basics of selecting the right processing machinery and raw materials to production technology for resin pellets and end products as well as the vast possibilities of end applications (including building construction). The exciting applications of products made from these polymeric composites with rice hulls as ideal substitutes for natural wood will evoke great interest and help ease current global environmental concerns. This book will be an ideal source of information for resin-pellet manufacturers, processors and end users as well as enhance research in this field.

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Re: Indian Agriculture and Agro-based Industry

Postby Prem » 22 Mar 2015 06:56

Indian scientists make breakthrough in agricultural productivity
http://indiatoday.intoday.in/education/ ... 24952.html

Five Indian scientists have been able to demonstrate an increase of whopping 40 per cent to 100 per cent in agricultural production using nano-technology and iron-pyrite - one of the cheapest and abundant minerals available on earth.The 13th New AG International Conference - world's largest event for agricultural technology - was held this week in New Delhi this year and attended by hundreds of delegates from more than 60 countries. However India stole the show with this breakthrough innovation that enhances productivity without fertilizer or genetic engineering.The team of Mainak Das, Deepu Philip, Sushil Kr Singh, Kalpana Bhargava and Niroj K Sethy found a new way to treat seeds with nano-particles of iron-pyrites before sowing that enhances plant growth significantly. "I always wanted to do something to eradicate hunger. That is what motivated me to pursue this research", says Mainak Das who is a faculty in Biological Sciences at IIT Kanpur. He and his colleague Deepu Philip from Industrial Engineering, IITK left their lucrative careers in USA to come back to India and give back. Kalpana and Sushil also have the same story. They also quit plush foreign jobs to join Defense Research & Development Organization (DRDO). The five pooled their own savings and assets for this research. While speaking to India Today, Sushil said, "We have been able to show wonderful results with spinach, carrot, fenugreek, sesame and beetroot so far. And this happens without disturbing the soil ecosystem unlike fertilizers as we are treating seeds and not soil. This is first time such results have been achieved to best of our knowledge.""We have observed significant increase in plant dimensions as well as healthy mineral content. This is called bio-stimulation. It is like making Captain America from frail Steve Rogers. In fact this is Captain India!", Niroj shared with excitement.Kalpana added, "The dosage requirement is minimal because of nano dimensions. There are no adverse impacts on either plant or soil. There is no tinkering with genome.""We are currently working towards making this technology production-ready and expanding to other food-items. We went so far ahead on our own. But would need support to take it to next level and achieve the dream of hunger-free India and hunger-free world in next two decades.", said Deepu. Mainak who leads the team summarized the passion of team, "Why just Make in India? We want Made by India, Make for India, Make for World."

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Re: Indian Agriculture and Agro-based Industry

Postby MurthyB » 15 Apr 2015 05:07

How Sikhs saved the Italian cheese industry


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Re: Indian Agriculture and Agro-based Industry

Postby RamaY » 24 Apr 2015 03:45

Study shows there’s money in small-acreage vegetable production

What we found, bottom line, is that organic vegetable production on a small plot of land can be profitable,” he said. “It’s a lot of work, but one family can earn a $45,000 annual salary on a 3-acre plot.” :shock: Means ~$15,000 in India.

...
What the study found was that such an operation can take in gross returns of $60,000 to $65,000, Ribera said. Expenses, which include everything from labor, seed and water to delivery bags, electricity and fuel, total about one-third, or $20,000.

“That leaves a net cash return of $40,000 to $45,000,” he said. “So, obviously, it is feasible to create a profitable business on a relatively small parcel of land, provided the customers, especially the CSA, are there. But it is a lot of work and a lot of planning, based on what our three producers told us.”
...


A publication of the study, “Economic feasibility of a small acreage organic vegetable farm in South Texas,” can be found online at http://agecoext.tamu.edu .


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Re: Indian Agriculture and Agro-based Industry

Postby Uttam » 24 Apr 2015 18:35

An interesting news about Jain Irrigation teaming up with MIT for a desalination project design.
MIT INVENTION TURNS SALT WATER INTO DRINKING WATER USING SOLAR POWER
From plants to people, every living thing on this planet needs water. But getting enough to survive, and survive comfortably, that can be a little tricky. Just look at the furor around California's new water restrictions. If a state as wealthy as California is having to get creative in order to start saving water, you can bet that governments and municipalities with less money and clout are having to turn to even more inventive methods to get clean water without breaking the bank.
Luckily, some of the brightest minds in the world are on the case. USAID recently announced the winners of the Desal Prize, part of a competition to see who could create an affordable desalination solution for developing countries. The idea was to create a system that could remove salt from water and meet three criteria: it had to be cost-effective, environmentally sustainable, and energy efficient.
The winners of the $140,000* first prize were a group from MIT and Jain Irrigation Systems. The group came up with a method that uses solar panels to charge a bank of batteries. The batteries then power a system that removes salt from the water through electrodialysis. On the most basic level, that means that dissolved salt particles, which have a slight electric charge, are drawn out of the water when a small electrical current is applied. In addition to getting rid of salt (which makes water unusable for crops and for drinking), the team also applied UV light to disinfect some of the water as it passed through the system.
Using the sun instead of fossil fuels to power a desalination plant isn't a totally new idea. Larger solar desalination plants are being seriously investigated in areas where water is becoming a scarce resource, including Chile and California. While proponents hope to eventually could provide water to large numbers of people, the technology is still expensive (though prices are dropping) and requires a lot of intricate technology.
In rural areas or developing countries, durability is key, and technology that requires constant upkeep won't last long. The MIT/Jain team and their competitors tested their projects at the Brackish Groundwater National Desalination Research Facility in New Mexico, where they had to run the system for 24 hours at a time, removing salt from 2,100 gallons of water each day. The next step is to test it in an even harsher environment, exposing it to everyday use with rural farmers in an area where USAID is active. If all goes well, the system could provide enough water to irrigate a small farm.

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Re: Indian Agriculture and Agro-based Industry

Postby SBajwa » 01 May 2015 01:45

by Ramana
I notice that basmati rice in US is no longer as flavorful as before years;Tilda, Royal, Adora, Costco.

Could this be due to the Pusa-1509 variety?


Yes!! The farmers in Punjab/Haryana for their own households grow the Desi Basmati (totally different flavor) but that only gives them around 12 Tons each Acre. In order to make more money they have to grow the more yield crops and thus to sell they use Pusa-1509.

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Re: Indian Agriculture and Agro-based Industry

Postby geeth » 02 May 2015 11:12

12 tons per ACRE or HECTARE?

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Re: Indian Agriculture and Agro-based Industry

Postby Javee » 03 May 2015 09:36

Pandyan,
Just Google for Monsanto 'so lawsuits on farmers in the US. They sued a farmer in the Midwest for growing Monsanto corn illegally. The farmer was puzzled as he did not plant them. The adjacent farm planted it and some of the corn seeds were wind blown in to his farm and Monsanto sued him for damages.

The seeds and not sterile, they have sued other farmers who has replanted them. Also year on year they keep releasing new seeds as the pests get immune to Roundup.

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Re: Indian Agriculture and Agro-based Industry

Postby panduranghari » 11 May 2015 12:04



India-Israel-Australia trilogue. Very informative from the perspective of Indian standing in the agriculture compared to the other 2 nations.

Indian politicians give 10 times more subsidies than the investments in agriculture technology.

Indian agriculture investment is 0.6% OF GDP. Brazil the closest BRIC is 1.8%

Less than 10% of food is processed in India compared to more than 50% in any other country in the world.

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Re: Indian Agriculture and Agro-based Industry

Postby prahaar » 11 May 2015 13:33

I was reading about IOT platforms supporting very low power (read long term) and cheap hardware which sense temperature humidity etc. The drip irrigation system could at least in theory be a nice backbone to make water/nutrient usage efficient by order of magnitude. Even without drip irrigation many crops like Grapes/etc. which involve significant infrastructure can easily incorporate such monitors.

I could not find any information about central government initiatives about technology infusion in farming. Although soil health card is a good step, further steps for technology infusion is essential.

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Re: Indian Agriculture and Agro-based Industry

Postby panduranghari » 11 May 2015 17:32

Technology infusion is not a problem. We have to move away from subsidy culture. The MSP set for 23 food grain products benefits only 15% of FARMERS. 15%!!! 85% do not benefit from MSP. The farming co operatives are not very ubiquitous. Only 1 is successful - Amul. Rest are used by politicians as their own jagir. Please listen to Israeli guy in that video and Mr Gulati who clear many misconceptions.

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Re: Indian Agriculture and Agro-based Industry

Postby Theo_Fidel » 11 May 2015 21:14

Agriculture around the world is always highly subsidized. The west should cut its subsidies first before advising India to cut subsidies. Maybe we can target better but I don’t see agriculture subsidies reducing, in fact more likely increasing as we get wealthier.

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Re: Indian Agriculture and Agro-based Industry

Postby SBajwa » 11 May 2015 22:12

The farming co operatives are not very ubiquitous. Only 1 is successful - Amul. Rest are used by politicians as their own jagir. Please listen to Israeli guy in that video and Mr Gulati who clear many misconceptions.


Verka brand in Punjab (competitor to amul) is successful.


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