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Need to integrate India's agri produce into global processed foods market: PM Modi

NEW DELHI: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday said that India of 21st century needs post-harvest or food processing revolution and for that his government is initiating steps to integrate country's agricultural produce into the global processed foods market.

"It is the need of the hour to ensure farmers' produce get as many options in the market as possible. We have to integrate our agricultural produce into the global processed foods market," said PM Modi while addressing a webinar on the implementation of Budget in the agriculture sector.

Listing out the steps taken by his government for agriculture in Budget 2021-22, he said, "India of 21st century needs post-harvest or food processing revolution and value addition amid increasing agriculture production. It would have been good for the country had this been done 2-3 decades back."

"Central government has increased agriculture credit target to Rs 16.50 lakh crore - animal husbandry, dairying, and fisheries sectors have been given priority. Rural infrastructure fundraised to Rs 40,000 crore. Micro-irrigation fund doubled,"he added.

"We have made reforms and started Production-Linked Incentive (PLI) schemes worth Rs 11,000 crore which will help the agro-industries. Ready to eat, ready to cook, seafood, and several other items are being promoted," he said.

Highlighting the need for the participating by the private sector, he said, "It is time the private sector increases its participation in Research and Development in the agriculture sector. It should not be limited to just seeds, but a holistic scientific ecosystem associated with one crop, the entire cycle."

Ensuring the profit for the smallest farmers, he added that with food processing, "We must also focus on helping the smallest farmers with modern technology."

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