LUDHIANA, 30 June 2021: The ICAR-Agricultural Technology Application Research Institute, Ludhiana, Punjab organized the National Consultation Meet on “Linking farmers with the market with special emphasis on direct marketing models for Citrus, Sapota, Kinnow and Vegetable Crops” recently.
Dr Ashok Kumar Singh, Deputy Director General (Agricultural Extension), ICAR stated that the perishable produce marketing is a challenge and conventional markets like the Rural Primary Market (weekly Haat) and Wholesale Market (Mandi) have limitations like poor market infrastructure, middlemen and informal traders’ network to regulate the price. He urged the delegates for restricting their suggestions which are practical and doable for making policy documents for useful purposes.
In his address, Dr P Chandra Shekara, Director General, National Institute of Agricultural Extension Management (MANAGE), Hyderabad emphasized on connecting mid-day meals, functional halls, public hostels, etc., that will provide vast opportunities for direct marketing. He also outlined the concept of family farmer where one family should connect one farmer for supply of their produce for the household need.
Dr K Sriniwas, ADG (IPTM), ICAR highlighted some Entrepreneurship options in direct marketing and the importance of innovation methods for the budding Entrepreneurs.
Citing the example of Kisan Rail for helping the farmers in safe transportation, Dr Vikrmaditya Pandey, ADG (Horticultural Science), ICAR accentuated on the requirement of trained human resources in marketing for procurement and disbursement.
Dr Bhawani Shankar, DGM, National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD), Mumbai, Maharashtra briefed about the FPOs’ role and potential in today’s era, whereas, Dr Ramesh Mittal, Director, National Institute of Agricultural Marketing (NIAM), Jaipur, Rajasthan emphasized on the role of proper branding and labelling for direct marketing.
Dr Nachiket, Director, ICAR-Central Institute of Post-Harvest Engineering & Technology, Ludhiana, Punjab stressed on focusing on minimal processing, attractive & safe packaging and delivery through cold chain of fresh fruits and vegetables as preferred by the customers, while Dr TK Behera, Director, ICAR-Indian Institute of Vegetable Research, Varanasi, Uttar Pradesh underlined the significance of brand development and quality maintenance of the products which can be achieved by proper handling and harvesting of the agricultural produce.
The need for small tools and machines for packaging of fresh commodities in the era of labour scarcity was emphasized by Dr BVC Mahajan, Director, Punjab Horticultural Post-harvest Technology Centre, Ludhiana, Punjab during the occasion.
Dr HS Dhaliwal, Director, Punjab Agricultural Management & Extension Training Institute (PAMETI), Ludhiana, Punjab underlined the model of roadside display and its prospects in direct marketing.
Earlier, in his welcome address, Dr Rajbir Singh, Director, ICAR-ATARI, Ludhiana, Punjab stressed on the need of proper guidelines and policy for direct marketing to encourage the farmers for hassle free marketing of their produce.
The senior officials of ICAR Institutes, State Agricultural Universities and International Organizations, etc., also shared their views during the occasion
Image credit: economiafinanzas.com