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KNOWLEDGE HUB

Emerging Technologies and information needs to be taken to the door steps of all the stakeholders within Agriculture and Food Processing domain and in particular to the door steps of the farmers Despite the numerous technologies available now, the main problem in boosting crop production with quality produce is the absence of proper dissemination of this information to the farmer.

  • eFresh portal made effort in indentifying the broad areas, which can be disseminated, which can transform into applications, resulting in increased income to the farmers, supply of safe and quality food, environmental sustainability in agriculture and increased connectivity amongst the stakeholders.
  • Knowledge Hub is first of its kind, initiative taken by eFresh portal in order to provide an impetus to the farm and food sector by providing information on Good Agricultural Practices, Organic Farming, Legal Manual for Imports/Exports, Farm Tools and Machinery, Good Post Farm Practices, Pre farm and post farm certification schemes etc.

*Note – The information provided in the portal has been prepared by experts to the best of their knowledge. However, the usage of information provided under the respective sections is only an indication/generic and the user should make his own judgement for the usage and efreshindia shall not be responsible for any loss/damage/issues arising out of usage of the information by the user/member.

The information under this title covers

Agriculture Profile - India

  • Agriculture in India is one of the most important sectors of its economy. One of the biggest success stories of independent India is the rapid strides made in the field of agriculture. From a nation dependent on food imports to feed its population, India today is not only self-sufficient in grain production but also able to feed the rest of the world.

Let us have a look at the statistics Demand - Supplies Trends and projection of Food in India Prepared by ICRIER

1) Projected Domestic Demand and Supply of food in India

Food 2011 2026
Demand Supply Demand Supply
Rice 94.5 95.7 102.20 111.2
Wheat 60.10 80.2 69.1 97.9
Total Cereals 187.8 209.7 273.5 260.2
Pulses 23.0 16.1 51.0 18.4
Sugar 26.7 25.0 81.1 26.4

The above projections made considering that the economy grows at 8% per annum

2) India share in the worlds food production :

According to the FAO, India topsin the production of one eighth of all agri-commodities in the world like Mango, Castor seed, Banana, Lemons etc.

  • Contributes to almost 18% of its national GDP (about 5% of national GDP from horticulture) while about 70% of its population is engaged in the agricultural food chain
  • Large irrigated area (57 mill. acres v/v USA's 60 mill. acres versus the global 1382 million hectares) and diverse agro-climatic zones (with the consequent potential to raise three crops annually) can catapult India into one of the leading players in world food trade.
  • Ranks first in world production of Mango, Pomegranate, Cashew
  • Stands second globally in the production of fruits and vegetables (170 million tones)
  • Fruits & vegetables (of Horticulture crops) occupy about 65% of area under cultivation (91 million hectares – next to China) and 90% of horticulture production
  • Growth over a sixteen year period in terms of production of fruits (million tones)has grown at 129% while production of vegetables has grown over 125% (1991-‘92 to 2007-'08)
  • Fruits account for 13% of global production from 12% of area under cultivation.
  • Accounts for 14% of global production of vegetables from merely 14% of area under cultivation
  • Exports of cashew stood at Rs. 269.27 crore in December 2009 (During the period April –December 2009 – 82053 tones valued at Rs. 2316.44 crore were exported).
  • Plenty of opportunities in processing, storage & logistics to minimise post harvest losses in fruits–vegetables which are huge.
  • Several multinational entities (PepsiCo, Tesco, Wal-Mart etc.) keen on India as a sourcing hub.
  • Largest producer, consumer & exporter of spices (Rs. Cr. 464 or $100 million for 39 thousand tones during the November 2009)
  • Large global producer of food grains – about 234 Mill. tones.
  • Exports of Fresh Fruit and Vegetable have grown to about Rs. Two Thousand Crores with the top rung occupied by Cashew at US$ Million 533 compared to the world trade at US$ Million 1690.
Food World India % of India share in the world
Production in Million Tones( 2007)
Cereals 260 2351 11
Pulses 14.17 55.87 25.37
Sugar Crops 355 1838 19.31
Oil Crops 12 148.78 8.06
Vegetables 77 908.8 8.48
Fruits 523 65 13

Source: FAO Statistics (2007)

Population & economy growing, but the growth in Food supply not matching , Action plan in place ?

India is a leader in many of the food commodities and therefore the responsibility of India is to feed its own population and also to feed the rest of the world.

"Let all of us contribute to yet to another Green Revolution elevating the India’s position in the world’s stage"

  • Efresh made effort in explaining the overall agricultural scenario in India, which will be useful information to the user in order to better understand the position of India.

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Good Agriculture Practices Manual(FAO)

Good Agriculture Practices

The Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) is a part of United Nations, specialized in aspects related to food quality and safety, along the different stages of production, harvest, post-harvest handling, storage, transport, processing and distribution of food. FAO adheres to the food chain approach in managing food safety and quality as a recognition of the responsibility of all actors in the food chain for the supply of food that is safe, healthy and nutritious.

  • In order to maintain the food quality, safety and nutrition, FAO has published a manual on Good Agricultural Practices.
  • eFresh reproduced this manual for the benefit of the farmers and other stakeholders and every one can access this section free of cost . No charges are collected from the users for using the information.
  • eFresh acknowledges the important role played by FAO/WHO in formulating guidelines in production of safe and quality food worldwide.

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Certification Schemes

Consumers demand a higher quality of food, not only in terms of food composition (i.e. nutritional composition of the product) but also in safety.

  • In order to meet the objectives of production of safe and quality food, the governments and the retailers , have demanded implementation of food safety standards as laid down by them in the production and distribution of food.
  • These standards are referred to as certification schemes.
  • Authorised certification bodies will assess the organizations on the implementation of these standards and award certificates.
  • Questions about certification
  • Pre-farm gate certification schemes
  • Post-farm gate cerification schemes

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Publications

eFresh has made an attempt to provide important and informative publications on agriculture and food safety and quality in this section broadly categorized as

1) Food Safety & Quality Publications

Food safety is a fundamental public health concern. The Food Safety and Quality has become an area of priority and necessity for consumers, retailers, manufacturers and regulators. Changing global patterns of food production, international trade, technology, public expectations for health protection and many other factors have created a huge demand for food safety and quality. Here are a few publications on food safety and quality with the following heads.

Efresh acknowledges the important role played by FAO/WHO in formulating guidelines/publishing important documents in production of safe and quality food.

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The publications under this section covers various publications on food and agriculture, which the users can access free of cost. Anybody without being a member can access the portal for this information .

  • This will expose the user/member to a vast library of knowledge and information and shall be handy to the user/member in his/her farming practices or business.

Farm Tools and Machinery

The productivity from Agriculture farms largely depends on the availability of farm labor. However, recent migration of farm labour to cities for better employment opportunities is adversely affecting the supply of workers for farming activities.

There is urgent need to focus on farm mechanization through introduction of new Tools/ Machines for timely handling of the farm activities with reduced dependency on the farm labor.

New Farm Tool and machines will also facilitate enhanced productivity and quality of the produce.

  • eFresh has made efforts in collecting the information from the institutions and also from the experts across India. eFresh is also in the process of collecting the information from the manufacturers, who are specialized in the agricultural machinery across the world.
  • For better understanding of the machinery, efresh has provided the photograph of the machine along with approximate price as indicated by the supplier.
  • eFresh is not involved neither in the negotiation of commercial transaction nor recommending the particular machine/tool for particular crop. It is for the user to make his own assessment for purchase of machinery and to make his own enquiries in the market about the technical competency of the machinery / Tools etc and its suitability for his operations.
  • In case the user is interested to have the details of manufacturers for the respective sections, then he should visit “Manufacturers-Farm tools and Machinery” under commercial section

Food Safety & Quality

Effective national food control systems are essential for the production of safe and quality food in order to protect the health of the consumers. considerable obligations are placed on both importing and exporting countries to strengthen their food control systems across the food chain.

  • Consumers are taking unprecedented interest in the way food is produced, processed and marketed, and are increasingly calling for their Governments to accept greater responsibility for food safety and consumer protection.
  • Efresh made an effort for creating awareness of various stake holders in agri and food domain, on various internationally recognized standards.
  • Many stake holders are not aware of preparing the food safety quality manual meeting the requirements of the respective standards for implemention.
  • Efresh made an effort in preparing a food safety quality manual-Generic in nature, so that the users c an understand the basic structure of the manual and its minimum requirements to be addressed.
  • The users can use this structure as a first step for adoption and then the organization need to document the practices /processes being implemented in it for production of product.

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Good Agricultural Practices

Good Agricultural Practices are a set of requirements to apply for on-farm production and post-production processes, resulting in safe production of food by ensuring sustainable and commercial viability of Agricultural production and environmental protection.

GAPs may be applied to a wide range of farming systems and at different scales. They are applied through sustainable agricultural methods, such as integrated pest management, integrated fertilizer management etc. They rely on four principles:

  • Economically and efficiently produce sufficient safe and nutritious food
  • Sustain and enhance natural resources;
  • Maintain viable farming enterprises and contribute to sustainable livelihoods;
  • Meet cultural and social demands of society.
  • Sustain Environmental protection

1) Global GAP

The GLOBALG.A.P standard is primarily designed to reassure consumers about how food is produced on the farm by minimizing detrimental environmental impacts of farming operations, reducing the use of chemical inputs and ensuring a responsible approach to workers health and safety.

  • GLOBALG.A.P serves as a practical manual for Good Agricultural Practice (G.A.P.) anywhere in the world.
  • With the increasing awareness amongst the consumers about food safety and quality, it has been found necessary to implement Global GAP you can find more information in the presentation.
  • GlobalGAP was setup initially by European Retailers and other stake holders as voluntarily standard for the certification of production processes of Agricultural products around the globe
  • There are about 1,02,267 GlobalGAP certificates issued around the world as of April’ 2010 as against only 1989 in India.
  • GlobalGAP made good effort in bringing out this scheme an Efresh acknowledges the important role played by GlobalGAP in production of safe and quality primary produce around the globe
  • The farms can be certify against the global standards by approved agencies as listed in the GlobalGAP website. For more information visit www.globgalgap.org

2) Organic Farming

Organic farming is the form of agriculture that relies on techniques such as crop rotation, green manure, compost and biological pest control to maintain soil productivity and control pests on a farm. Organic farming excludes or strictly limits the use of manufactured fertilizers and pesticides, plant growth regulators such as hormones, food additives, and genetically modified organisms.

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Cold Storage - Standards

India is the largest producer of fruits and second largest producer of vegetables in the world. In spite of that per capita availability of fruits and vegetables is quite low because of post harvest losses, which account for about 25% to 30% of production. Besides, quality of a sizable quantity of produce also deteriorates by the time it reaches the consumer.

This is mainly because of perishable nature of the produce, which requires a cold chain arrangement to maintain the quality and extend the shelf life if consumption is not meant immediately after harvest. In the absence of a cold storage and related cold chain facilities, the farmers are being forced to sell their produce immediately after harvest which results in glut situations and low price realization.

Efresh reproduced the Technical standards published by National Horticulture Board. Any entrepreneur interested in setting up the cold storage unit, must construct theunit meeting the requriemetns of these technical standards in order to avail the financial benefits.

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Plant Protection Chemicals

Plants are a part of the food chain and their growing features offer conducive growth conditions for various pests and diseases.

In order to control or manage these pests and diseases at various growth stages of crop life and during storage & transport too, many chemicals are used.

  • The build-up in- and aftereffects on- the human body of most such chemicals have led to the imposition of maximum residue levels (MRLs) in the finished produce and its restricted use or a complete ban on the use of the chemical in its various forms.
  • This is the most important and sought after subject since any improper use of chemicals may result complete loss of produce to the farmers and also causing severe health issues. Therefore effort is made to give elaborative information on the critical components.

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Good Post Farm Practices

The information under this section includes, Good Post Farm Practices are a collection of principles to apply for on-farm production and post-production processes, resulting in safe and healthy food

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