After the green revolution Indian
become cereal based, region centric, input intensive and
consumed higher land,
water, fertilizers. A rainbow revolution is needed
to ensure that pulses,
fruits and vegetables too are given importance.
Per capita availability of
water and arable land in India has been on the decline
steadily. India needs to
move to more from less strategy.
Problem of Minimum Support Price
Indian agriculture is focused on
wheat and rice
intensive where both are grown on most fertile land. They
also consume most of
the resources like water, M.S.P., fertilizers but have
very low yields.
Unlike other countries the
quantity of water used
for a unit of crop is higher in India. Also India
exports water intensive crops
unlike china that imports water intensive crops.
Solution could be use of drip
irrigation to save
water and fertilizer. The key impediment to these are the
high cost of initial
installation and skill needed for maintenance.
When planting crops the farmers
could use an option contract to safeguard his
price of selling to make adequate
returns. But this facility is available to only a few
farmers. The government
thus uses M.S.P to protect farmers interest.
Problem with M.S.P policy is that
it is high for wheat
and rice and low for pulses thus discouraging production
of pulses which have
to be imported. The farmers who know about M.S.P vary from
state to state and
crop to crop.
Thus in reality very few know
about M.S.P. M.S.P is also not taking
into account negative externalities like use of chemical
practices and overuse of groundwater. This leads to
future problems and have to
Farmers should also get advantage
of Price Deficient
Payment by D.B.T if the price of produce in A.P.M.C is
less than the M.S.P. Such a
system is also consistent with India’s obligation at
Agriculture research too is
plagued with its own
The states where agriculture has
an important role too see fewer
students joining the agriculture universities.
The institutions are suffering
from lack of talented faculty, link with international
organizations, lab to
farm connect, resource crunch.
Scientists in agriculture
research have low to
very low productivity and hence their performance
needs better monitoring.
National Agriculture Market
Agriculture is plagued with the
problem of market
segmentation due to poor connectivity in rural areas,
local market domination,
intermediaries, restricted entry, local storage capacity.
Farmers had been hit by demonetization as they faced cash shortage. This led to difficulty in paying back agriculture laborers and procuring inputs needed for farming or transporting stock to markets. However in the aftermath of demonetization the wholesale and retail prices of perishables remained above the farm gate prices i.e. price received by farmers for selling to middlemen at APMC’s. The monopoly in the supply chain means that farmers have to sell at any price. Meanwhile agri business chains can't get access to the farmers. This means that prices of commodities remain high.
However the government can change this since it has the power conferred by the Union list entry “inter state trade and commerce”. The agriculture trade can be freed from shackles of APMC’s and a National market can be created for farm produce. This will also boost the trade at National Agriculture Market portal that is currently under performing.
A unified market for
agriculture is needed.
Problems with the Seed industry
Monsanto and Indian seeds companies are in a conflict over the Patent fees payment. In India, the Indian patents Act excludes any method of patent related to agriculture or horticulture sector. The Intellectual property rights under this are covered by the Protection of plant varieties and farmer’s rights Act. Monsanto believes that the transgenic variety isn’t covered under PPVFR Act and wants a royalty from the Indian seeds companies. However the Indian seeds companies are expecting the PPVFR Authority to decide a reasonable royalty or patent fee for use of Bt-Cotton seeds.
Bt-Cotton seeds are created by transferring a gene from Bt-worm into cotton seeds. This gives them immunity from attacks by Bollworm. Bollworm attacks reduce the productivity of cotton fields.
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