The Odisha government will formulate a new agriculture policy, which will focus on the income enhancement of farmers, said an official on Tuesday.
Agriculture Secretary Saurabh Garg said the state government will replace Agriculture Policy 2013 with a new one that would stress on the income enhancement of farmers.
He said that the Agriculture Department had sought suggestions from other departments concerned to formulate the new policy. The departments were asked to give their inputs within two weeks.
Garg said the vision of the draft policy was to harness Odisha’s agriculture potential in a sustainable manner and raise its farmers’ income continuously while ensuring nutritional security.
The draft policy is being worked out through a wide process of consultation with experts, universities, civil society bodies and farmers’ groups.
The policy recommends sector-wise interventions for overcoming the difficulties faced in last years and maximising of the outcomes.
Chief Secretary Aditya Prasad Padhi on Tuesday chaired a high-level intersectoral meeting for the purpose at the Secretariat.
Padhi directed officials to create an ecosystem for flourishing of farmer producer groups and mobilising private investment in the sector.
Development Commissioner Asit Kumar Tripathy said the policy should be oriented towards crop diversification, value addition and market linkages. Agriculture Production Commissioner Gagan Kumar Dhal advised developing calamity resilient seeds and agricultural practices.
Public investment in agriculture had reached Rs 17,000 crore in 2018-19, said an official.
The Odisha government has taken pioneering steps like rolling out an exclusive budget for agriculture and forming a separate Agri-Cabinet. As a result, the state has become a surplus agri producer – producing 117 lakh MT of food grain in 2016-17 with 25 lakh MT rice surplus. (Agency)