India Pulses and Grains Association (IPGA), the nodal body for India’s pulses trade and industry welcomes the amendment to the Essential Commodity Act by the Government of India and President giving his assent for the three farm bills passed by the parliament.
Bimal Kothari, Vice Chairman, IPGA said, “This is a very welcome move and IPGA gives a thumbs up on behalf of the traders. The farm sector has been unleashed by the Government of India and it has completely opened up. This is a major step towards doubling the farmers’ income and boost govt efforts in this direction. The farmers are now at a liberty to sell their products directly to the processors, traders or through mandis. They don’t have to sell through mandis only thereby reducing the heavy commissions and expenses which were being incurred by them earlier. Now, the farmers can decide their own selling price and sell directly to the traders, processors and manufacturers.
This amendment is hugely beneficial to the trade as well. The Essential Commodity act, which has been a draconian law, was used by the state against the traders from time to time for harassment. This progressive change will allow the traders to do their business without any hindrance. Now that the farm sector has opened up, we can expect lot of investment from the trade towards agri infrastructure especially in the growing areas.
This investment in infrastructure will boost value for the farmers, enhance production, minimise post harvest losses, better storage facilities with larger capacities, modernisation and technology. This will also improve accessibility and availability of goods throughout the year as goods can be stored for longer periods despite natural calamities and irregularity in weather conditions when crops are affected. Earlier due to difficult laws, trade wasn’t willing to make large investments because of uncertainty. Now trade will invest more and they can do business without any fear and apprehensions.
With the government coming up with FPOs, traders and manufacturers can have partnership with farmers through these FPOs to grow their produce for mass supply and meet the increasing demand. Many options such as contract farming are possible now. With this amendment in the essential commodity act, the traders will be in a position to buy the produce directly from the farmers, hold it for a longer period thereby the farmers will be assured of the price as well as it will ensure availability of produce in case of natural calamities or extreme weather conditions.
This will not only benefit the farmers but also the trade and manufacturing sector as there will be value addition, huge employment generation and increase in the GDP of agriculture. IPGA applauds this wonderful and extremely welcome change in the law enacted by govt. of india. We are excited with the humungous opportunities unfolding in the future for the whole agri-ecosystem. We will address and urge the trade fraternity to embrace this positive move and to do the utmost to take the advantage in the best interest of our nation and farmers.
We are confident that this policy will boost the farm production, boost the economy and create many avenues for the trade to invest in agri-infrastructure, value-added products and plan for long term business.”
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