Agriculture Minister’s Message on World Food Day
World Food Day is a day of action dedicated to tackling global hunger. The theme of World Food Day 2018 is ‘Our actions are our future – A zero hunger world by 2030 is possible’.
Speaking on the World Food Day, Minister of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare Shri Radha Mohan Singh said that the Indian Council of Agricultural Research takes action to remove the suffering from hunger and ensure food security and a nutritious diet for all. The focus of the Government of India is that food is a basic need and fundamental human right. Zero hunger could save the lives of 301 million a year, and can help build a safer, more prosperous world for everyone. The Government of India aims to transform India’s agricultural sector to contribute to the achievements of global environmental objectives, and has launched a new project in association with FAO, India office known as ‘Green-agriculture: transforming Indian agriculture for global environmental benefits and the conservation of critical biodiversity and forest landscapes’..
On farmers welfare the Minister said “the farmers, whom we respectfully call our ‘Annadaata’ or the providers of food, are central to our efforts in food processing. We have a stated target of doubling farm incomes by 2022. Recently, the Pradhan Mantri Kisan Sampada Yojana, a national level programme, was launched to create world-class food processing infrastructure. This is expected to leverage investment of five billion US dollars, benefit two million farmers and generate more than half a million jobs over the next two years.”
On Mega Food Parks the Minister said “Through these food parks, we aim to link agro-processing clusters with key production centres. This will offer immense value proposition in crops such as potato, pineapple, oranges and apples. Farmers groups are being encouraged to set up units in these parks, thereby reducing wastage and transportation costs, and creating new jobs.”
On digitalization in Agriculture the Minister said “We plan to link our villages through broadband connectivity, within a clear timeframe. We are digitizing land records, and providing various services to the people on mobile platforms. These steps are building momentum towards real-time transfer of information, knowledge and skills to farmers. The e-NAM, our national agriculture e-market, is connecting our agricultural markets nationwide, thereby giving our farmers the benefit of competitive pricing, and freedom of choice.”
The Minister stated that he was happy to learn that the Indian Farming, a monthly magazine of the ICAR, is dedicating a special issue on the theme of World Food Day 2018 – ‘Our actions are our future – A zero hunger world by 2030 is possible’. He said that qualitative information contributed by renowned scientists of FAO, CGIAR and ICAR systems will benefit agriculture knowledge seekers.