National News

Making Rural India Self Reliant – a virtual conference on Dairy & fisheries. Jun 26, 2020

CII North Regional Committee on Food Processing, Agriculture & Dairy, organized a virtual Conference on Dairy & Fisheries: Making Rural India Self Reliant on 26th June 2020.

Highlights of the event:

The Chief Guest, Shri J P Dalal, Hon’ble Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries, Animal Husbandry and Dairying, Government of Haryana in his address aid that farmers can become atmanirbhar by crop diversification, focusing on dairy, fisheries & animal husbandry. He added that Haryana has huge potential in dairy and fisheries sector given the expanse of saline lands in the state.

Shri J P Dalal also urged and extended support to the Department of Fisheries to build a world-class aquarium in Gurugram to attract tourism as well as educate the masses on aqua life. The Hon’ble Minister mentioned the emergence of Ganaur market as hub of fish sale and their vision to double fish exports from the current worth of INR 40-45 cr. He further invited proposals from entrepreneurs and industrialists to invest in dairy and fisheries production to reap maximum benefit from white & blue wealth.

In his Inaugural address, Dr Rajeev Ranjan, Secretary - Department of Fisheries, Government of India opined need to support recirculating aqua culture techniques to diversify and increase production upto the new target of 220 lakh tonnes. He further added that we must work towards up-skilling and capacity building of farmers in order to truly realize rural capability of our nation. He applauded the efforts of the farmers and entrepreneurs in exporting over 14 lakh tonnes of fish worth INR 46608 cr last year and urged further private participation in technological dissemination to the blue wealth. Dr Ranjan mentioned about the immense opportunity that lies with Haryana to aqua farm with its 2.33 lakh hectare of saline wasteland.

Mr Tarun Sridhar, Former Secretary, Government of India, emphasized the livelihood opportunities that COVID-19 has presented to farmers and migrant labourers who have returned to their homes in animal and fisheries sector. He quoted livestock farming as the “ATM machine of farmers” as it provides 4 times the return than crop farming. In order to secure rural economy, he insisted on creating mixed farming models for farmers and hand hold them to make India atmanirbhar. Mr Sridhar also underlined the importance of strengthening the quality of veterinary services in the country.

Mr Jasmohan Singh, Chairman, CII Regional Committee On Food Processing, Agriculture and Dairy & Managing Director, Frick India Ltd said that agri, dairy, fisheries and animal husbandry is the key cornerstone of rural growth and is paramount to achieve the target of INR 5 trillion economy by 2024-25. He stressed on the fact that we must attend to the concerns and opportunities in these sectors to align with the Hon’ble Prime Minister’s vision of Making Rural India Self Reliant.

Mr Jai Agarwal, Co chairman CII NR Committee & MD C P Milk Products Pvt Ltd chaired the 1st Session. He mentioned that level playing field for all players irrespective of sector is very important to improve competitiveness in dairy sector.

Dr Joykrushna Jena, Deputy Director General (Fisheries Science), Indian Council of Agricultural Research mentioned that the biggest issue is health issues in fisheries. Due to Covid, our export market crashed. We should improve our domestic consumption also in fisheries. Haryana is taking lead in shrimp production followed by Punjab. Hygienic Market creation is very important.

Mr Rajiv Mitra, CEO Prabhat Dairy stressed that value added products for longer shelf life can address the problem of shortage in demand due to exigencies like Covid 19.

Mr R S Dixit, Chairman & Managing Director, Ananada Dairy Pvt Ltd urged that the GST for milk and milk produced must be lowered to make our products competitive in market.

Mr Bibhu Nanda, Chief Operating Officer, Milk Mantra Dairy Pvt Ltd stated that the affordable value addition in dairy industry is utmost important. Dairy Financial inclusion is important for market competitiveness.

Mr B Sumit Kumar, CEO, TCI Cold Chain Solutions Ltd mentioned that supply chain should be strengthened to avoid wastage. It can be hub and spoke model nearer to sea for fisheries. Availability of processing centres in the vicinity would avoid wastage and maintain quality.

The second session was chaired by Dr Praveen Malik, Animal Husbandry Commissioner, Government of India. He stressed that we have to convert crisis to opportunity for changing the mindset of survival to growth for making livestock for prosperity with the use of latest technologies with backward & forward linkages.

S. Inderjeet Singh, Director, Punjab Dairy Development Board mentioned that Punjab has reached saturation in terms of agriculture and there is an acute shortage of labour. To overcome the issues of farming community, the farmers are being giving subsidy for animal husbandry sector (dairy / fisheries etc).

Dr K Rathnam, Chief Executive Officer, Milky Mist Dairy Foods Pvt. Ltd. mentioned that initially there was a drop in demand but then the demand surged for products with high protein and immunity boosters. This kind of situation (Covid 19) has given opportunity for high value processed products.

Mr Suresh B P , Joint Director, Karnataka Milk Federation shared that to overcome the challenges posed by Covid 19, more stressed should be given to e commerce selling, door step delivery in a safe and hygienic way.

Mr Sachin Sharma, Head- Channel Operations, ITC Ltd mentioned that the reengineering of the supply chain is pertinent to maintain quality, safety, hygiene and traceability of dairy and marine products.

The Conclave was attended by over 180 participants from Dairy, Fisheries sector including Governmet officials, industrialists, academicians and farmers.