Agriculture Current Affairs 2021
Agriculture Current Affairs January 2021
One of the first and largest virtual events in Indian Agriculture History – VIRTUAL AGRI INDIA HACKATHON’ has been inaugurated by our Union Minister of Agriculture & Farmers Welfare Shri Narendra Singh Tomar on 31st December 2020. This hackathon will last for 2 months and is organised by Pusa Krishi, IARI (Indian Agricultural Research Institute), ICAR (Indian Council of Agricultural Research), Department of Agriculture, Cooperation & Farmers’ Welfare and Ministry of Agriculture & Farmers’ Welfare. This hackathon is going to be conducted in blocks of Competition and Agri-India Meet. Under the Competition part, the applications were released on the website ‘MyGov.in’ and made live till 20th January 2021. And a total of 24 winners will be selected and will get a cash prize of Rs 1 lakh along with incubation support, pre-seed funding of Rs 5 lakhs and seed-stage funding of Rs 25 lakhs at any one of the 29 RABIs (subject to assessment by the independent RABI) as well as the winners will get the opportunity of the field trial, access technology validation & various other benefits along with the cash prize. Over 40 speakers will discuss the present scenario and predict the future scenario of agriculture under Agri-India Meet, which is a free online event. This hackathon is going to take forward our PM’s vision of introducing new-age technologies and innovations in Indian Agriculture.
On 13th January 2021, Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana (PMFBY) completed its 5 years of operation. It was launched by the Government of India on 13th January 2016. It’s a Crop Insurance Scheme in line with the Nation-One scheme theme and it replaces two existing Crop Insurance schemes named National Agricultural Insurance Scheme (NAIS) and Modified National Agricultural Insurance Scheme. This scheme provides insurance coverage and financial support to farmers in event of failure of crops due to natural calamities or pest and disease and it encourages farmers to adopt innovative practices which ensure the flow of credit to the agriculture sector. This scheme was made voluntary for all the farmers post revamp in February 2020 and under this scheme, the premium rates for Kharif crops are 2%, for Rabi crops, it is 1.5% and for commercial and horticultural crops it is 5%. The scheme is being implemented based on the ‘Area Approach’ and it covers all the crops for which past data is available and this also covers the risk of yield losses, prevented sowing, post-harvest losses and localised calamities.
Agriculture Current Affairs February 2021
The Union Territory Administration of Jammu and Kashmir signed an (MoU) Memorandum of Understanding with the NAFED (National Agricultural Cooperative Marketing Federation of India Limited) on January 1, 2021, to improve Horticulture marketing. NAFED will invest rupees 1700 crores for implementing the high-density plantation of Apple, Walnut, Cherry, Pear across 5500 ha in the next 5 years that is 2021 to 2025. This shall increase the income of farmers by 3-4 folds. NAFED will establish 20 Farmer-Producer organisations one in each district and will also construct 3 cold storages on each in North Kashmir, South Kashmir and Kathua. NAFED shall also ensure GI (Geographical Indication) tags for fruit crops like Apple, Walnut, Cherry, Olive, Litchi for the purpose of branding and marketing.
ICAR-IIHR, in collaboration with ICAR-ATARI and several other institutes, organised India’s largest Horticulture event – National Horticulture Fair which lasted five days from February 8 to February 12, 2021, at Bengaluru. The theme of the fair was Horticulture: For start-up and stand-up India and it aimed to increase farmers’ income by turning Horticulture into an enterprise especially in the wake of recent trend of educated youth coming to farming. For the first time, this fair was held in both formats of physical as well as virtual and it was inaugurated by the Minister of State Kailash Chaudhary. On the occasion of the fair, the Director-General of ICAR Dr Trilochan Mohapatra released a mobile app named Arka Vyapar. This app is developed to connect buyers and sellers of horticulture produce and products and it was developed in the collaboration with the Society for promotion of horticulture. The Indian Institute of Horticultural Research (IIHR), Bangalore has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with four private companies for the commercialization of IIHR technologies.
World Pulses Day is celebrated on 13th February 2021. The International Conference Global Virtual Ceremony in Rome was conducted on this day. The Union Minister of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare India Shri Narendra Singh Tomar addressed the International conference where he stated India’s contribution to the Global pulses production being 24%. He also mentioned India being the largest producer of pulses in the world and as well as almost self-sufficient in pulses production. He also stated that India has been working towards the increasing production of pulses to reduce the gap between demand & supply chain and from April to December 2020 India recorded an increase in the export of Agricultural goods included pulses with a 26% increase.
Agriculture Current Affairs March 2021
On 4th March 2021, CSIR floriculture Mission was virtually launched by Union Minister Dr Harshvardhan (Ministry of Science and Technology). The mission has been implemented in collaboration of the organisation such as ICAR-Directorate of Floriculture, KVIC (Khadi and Village Industries Commission), APEDA (Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority), TRIFED (Tribal Cooperative Marketing Development Federation of India Limited), FFDC (Fragrance and Flavour Development Centre), MSME (Ministry of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises) and various other universities. This has been approved by the Government of India for implementation in 21 States and Union Territories of India. The mission aims at combining the latest technologies in the field of floriculture, creating opportunities for entrepreneurship development in floriculture and it will focus on commercial crops seasonal or annual crops while ornamentals and cultivation of flower crops for purposes like Honey Bee rearing.
On 7th March 2021 ICAR received the King Bhumibol World Soil Day award by Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) at the ceremony held in Bangkok Thailand. On behalf of ICAR, the Ambassador of India to the Kingdom of Thailand – Suchitra Durai received the award from Dr. Chalermchai Srion, Minister of Agriculture and Cooperatives, Kingdom of Thailand. The King Bhumibol World Soil Day award is given to the individual or institution that organises a successful and impactful World Soil Day celebration and this award was announced by the FAO of United Nations in Rome on 4th December 2020 on the eve of World Soil Day 2020. A medal a USD 15,000 check and a trip to Thailand is being awarded to the winner.
India’s first forest healing Centre was inaugurated on March 9, 2021, at Ranikhet, Uttarakhand by the environmentalist Joginder Bisht. The forest is based on the theme ‘be silent go slow think less and feel more’ and it is developed by the Research Wing of Uttarakhand Forest Department in an area of 13 acres. The forest is inspired by the Japanese technique of forest bathing and ancient Indian traditions which are based on the concept of healing and revitalizing the overall health and well-being of people by bringing them into direct contact with the nature. The aim of developing a healing centre in a pine-dominated forest lies behind the oil compounds phytoncide which are emitted by pine and which help to multiply the natural killer cells in the human being thus helping in the overall immunity enhancement. There are various activities followed there such as meditation, Sky gazing and tree-hugging which helps a person to sustain stable mental and physical health.
Vice President of India, M Venkaiah Naidu released a book titled agriculture in India contemporary challenges in the context of doubling farmers’ income by Dr Mohan Kanda former Chief secretary of Andhra Pradesh on 31st March 2021. This book presents a meaningful production of challenges concerning Agricultural Research, policy, development and programs as well as it describes opportunities with thought-provoking prescriptions for harnessing the best of the talents and technologies for making Indian agriculture a vibrant sector of the economy. It also emphasis on the doubling of farmer’s income in rural India by suggesting they ‘produce locally and trade globally’.
Agriculture Current Affairs April 2021
A Village and Digital Connect Drive ‘Sankalp se Siddhi’ was launched by the TRIFED (Tribal Cooperative Marketing Development Federation of India) under the Ministry of Tribal Affairs (MoTA) on April 04, 2021. This drive aims to cover a total of 1500 villages in hundred days where the main motive is to transform the tribal ecosystem across the country and activate the Van Dhan Vikas Kendra in all tribal villages. On the activation of VDVKs in 1500 villages through the 100-day drive, the target of sales is estimated to be Rs. 200 crores during next 12 months. There will be total 150 teams (10 in each region) from TRIFED and State Implementation Agencies/Monitoring Agencies/Partners and there will be 100 villages in each region making the total 1500.
The first-ever Mega Ford Park project was launched on 17th April 2021 by Italy in India. This was launched virtually in presence of the Ambassador of Italy to India, Vincenzo de Luca and Neena Malhotra, the Ambassador of India to Italy. The promotion of the project is done in collaboration with various Agencies such as the Italian Embassy New Delhi, ICE office Mumbai, the Emilia Romagna Region, SACE, ANIMA (Italian Association representing companies operating in the metalworking sector) and Francium (Italian Agricultural Machinery Federation of Manufacturers). This Mega Ford Park project aims at providing a mechanism to link agricultural production to the market by bringing various factors together such as farmers, processors and retailers to ensure maximizing the value addition, minimising the wastage and increasing the farmer income by creating employment opportunities; as well it aims to create synergy between agriculture and industry of both India and Italy, it also focuses on the R&D (research and development) of new and efficient technologies in the food and agriculture sector. This project is implemented by a SPV (Special Purpose Vehicle) which is a body corporate registered under the Companies Act.
Agriculture Current Affairs May 2021
The NDDB (National Dairy Development Board) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Energy Efficiency services on May 5th 2021 to promote efficient renewable technologies in the industry of dairy. NDDB and ESSI have collaborated with different agencies to work in an efficient manner of designing and developing innovative energy-efficient business solutions in the dairy sector and for adopting non-conventional energy generating facilities for the disposal of agricultural waste and bio waste in an environment-friendly manner. For meeting the need for electricity steam and hot water for dairy plants in Dairy Cooperative networks, across the country, EESL shall propose various technically sound energy generation solutions.
As announced on May 11, 2021 – Shakuntala Haraksingh Thilsted became the first woman of Asian Heritage to receive the World Food Prize 2021. She is a native of Trinidad & Tobago, a citizen of Denmark and her descendant is Indian. She was awarded for her collaborative and interdisciplinary work which brought transformations in the aquatic food system, providing nutrition, a resilient ecosystem and securing livelihood for vulnerable people across the world. She also established the fact of small fish being an important source of micronutrients and fatty acids. The different approach of research insight and innovations in developing holistic & nutrition-sensitive aquaculture and food system has made her receive this award.
INR 2250 crore was allocated to Mission for Integrated Development of Horticulture (MIDH), a centrally sponsored scheme by the Ministry of Agriculture and farmers welfare. This allocation was given for development in the Horticulture sector for years 2021-22 and this was significantly higher than the amount located during 2020-21. MIDH was implemented since 2014-15 and has played a major role in increasing the area under Horticulture crops – it covers fruits, vegetables, root & tuber crops, mushroom, spice, flowers, aromatic plants and plantation crops; it also promotes growth through technology promotion extension processing and marketing. Under the scheme of MIDH the area and production during years 2014-15 to 2019-20 has increased by 9% and 14%, respectively. This scheme comes under the Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare.
On 31st, May 2021 Union Minister Shri Narendra Singh Tomar launched the Horticulture Cluster Development Program (CDP) to ensure the holistic growth of horticulture. In a pilot phase, the program will be implemented in 12 horticultural clusters out of the total 53 clusters selected for the CDP program. The program shall be implemented by the National Horticulture Board (NHB) of Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare. The main aim of the program is to identify horticulture sectors, grow them, develop them, and make them globally competitive. The program is designed in such a way that it will anchorage the geographical specialisation as well as promote integrated & market-led development of several horticulture clusters. It has been decided to scale up the program to cover all the identified clusters based on the learnings from the 12 selected clusters under the pilot project. This program will take into context all the issues related to the Indian horticulture sector – the pre-production, production, post-harvest management, logistics, marketing & branding etc. It has been estimated that CDP is going to benefit approximately 10 lakh farmers and the related stakeholders of the chain and improve the export of the crops targeted by 20%.
Agriculture Current Affairs June 2021
On June 2, 2021, Seed Minikit Program was launched by Union Minister Narendra Singh Tomar Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare. The program was launched by distributing seed mini kits, containing higher-yielding varieties of seeds to the farmers. These mini kits will be provided by the various central agencies like National Seeds Corporation (NCS), National Agricultural Cooperative Marketing Federation of India Limited (NAFED) and Gujarat State Seed Corporation. This program is completely funded by the centre through National Food Security Mission. The seed distribution will be continued till June 15, 2021, and a total of 20,27 318 mini kits of pulses, more than 8 lakh soybean seed mini kit and 74000 groundnut mini kits has to be decided to provide free of cost directly to the farmers under the mission of National Food Security.
On June 3, 20211 Indus Best Mega Ford Park was virtually inaugurated by Union Minister for Food Processing Industries Shri Narendra Singh Tomar at Raipur Chhattisgarh. The main aim of the food park is to reduce wastage of agricultural produce, ensure value addition, the longer shelf life of farm produce with excellent storage facility and a better price for farmers and an alternate market for farmers in the region. It has been estimated that the park will provide indirect and direct employment to about 5,000 people and benefit approximately 25000 farmers in the catchment areas. I have developed this Park under the Mega Ford Park Scheme of the central government and the Pradhan Mantri Kisan Sampada Yojana (PMKSY). The Mega Park has been constructed over an area of 63.8 acres with a project cost of over Rs. 145.5 crores.
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