ICRISAT and IOPEPC join hands to boost India’s oilseed production and export

Hyderabad, India – International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics (ICRISAT) and the Indian Oilseeds & Produce Export Promotion Council (IOPEPC) signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) on March 8, 2023, to enhance India’s oilseed production, improve quality and boost exports.

The MoU was signed by ICRISAT’s Director General, Dr Jacqueline Hughes, and IOPEPC’s Chairman, Nilesh Vira, with the aim of strengthening long-term cooperation to increase the quantum and quality of oilseeds grown in India.

In order to boost oilseed production, the collaboration will focus on expanding cultivated areas, deploying scientific technologies, and collaborating at all levels, including providing farmers with better quality certified seeds and strengthening the supply chain of oilseeds.

In addition, the partnership will promote food safety principles, recommend policies and programs to the Government of India and support the growth of the Indian oilseed sector.

During the discussions, Vira stressed the importance of developing climate-resilient oilseed crops, given the unpredictable weather patterns affecting India’s agriculture. He cited the challenge faced by farmers in growing aflatoxin-free groundnuts, a crop that is increasingly in demand in the export market.

“Farmers want oilseed crops that can withstand climate vagaries. Changing monsoon patterns are affecting oilseed crops that usually take 110-120 days to mature. Farmers do not want to grow oilseeds due to unpredictable weather and we need to find solutions,” said Vira.

Emphasizing the need to increase India’s oilseed production, Kishore Tanna, Director-Groundnut Panel Convenor, IOPEPC said that India is importing 15 million tonnes of edible oil and that because farmers do not want to grow oilseeds, especially groundnuts.

Tanna also drew attention to the fact that groundnut exports to the European Union had dropped to around 6000-7500 tonnes due to stringent import rules on aflatoxin that call for levels of not more than 2 – 4 PPB for various grades of groundnut.

Source : agriculturepost.com/agribusiness/ For More Details

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