New Delhi, November 27, 2017: In a bid to spread the ‘Millet Movement’ across the country, Karnataka Agriculture Minister Krishna Byra Gowda elucidated the benefits of millets and enccouraged the masses to opt for the same as an alternate food. Also present at the conference were large industries including ITC Foods, Herballife, Kwality, Bikanervala, GlaxoSmithKline, Marico, Bagrry Foods, Unilever, Tetra Pak, All India Farmer Association.
Karnataka is taking its Millet Revolution lock, stock, and barrel to the rest of the country, with the state Minister for Agriculture Krishna Byre Gowda unveiling the new website and logo of International Trade Fair – Organics & Millets-2018, scheduled to be held at Palace Grounds, Bengaluru, from January 19 to 21.
Recently, Karnataka Agriculture Minister Mr Krishna Byra Gowda had sent a proposal to the United Nations for declaring the year 2018 as ‘International Year of Millets’ which has recieved support from Union Agriculture minister Radha Mohan Singh .The proposal will raise awareness about millets among consumers, policy makers, industry and R&D sector.
Earlier, Karnataka Department of Agriculture organised roadshows across the country as a precursor to the International Trade Fair – Organics & Millets-2018 which aims to take the ‘Organic and Millet’ message to the rest of the world.
“Karnataka government’s Organics and Millet call is being answered by farmers across the country. Overlooked since the ‘Green Revolution’ of the 1960s, these forgotten food grains are on the comeback because of their superior nutritional profile and the fact that they are highly drought resistant,” said Agriculture minister Krishna Byra Gowda, while announcing the Organics and Millet Trade Fair.
Hailed as a miracle crop, the ancient grain Millets, largely wiped out from our farms and diets, is making a comeback, thanks to the efforts of Karnataka government. The three roadshows in Chennai, Hyderabad and Cochin on October 5th, October 24th and October 27th garnered considerable national attention, setting off an intense debate around the country on sustainable farming. The International Trade Fair on Organics & Millets will showcase the growing awareness about an alternative lifestyle and farming that respects nature. Nutritionally superior to wheat & rice owing to their higher levels of protein with more balanced amino acid profile, crude fiber & minerals such as Iron, Zinc, and Phosphorous, millets can provide nutritional security and act as a shield against nutritional deficiency, especially among children and women. The anaemia (iron deficiency), B-complex vitamin deficiency, pellagra (niacin deficiency) can be effectively tackled with intake of less expensive but nutritionally rich food grains like millets. Millets can also help tackle health challenges such as obesity, diabetes and lifestyle problems as they are gluten free, have a low glycemic index and are high in dietary fibre and antioxidants.
“This fair is a platform to bring farmers, marketers and consumers under one roof. We are proud to say that Karnataka is the first state to take the ‘Organic and Millet’ message to the world outside. Besides, our venture is the first of its kind initiative in the country to create awareness about the Organics and Millets from the government’s side. For this mission to be succesful, we need the support of our neighbouring states too,” Mr Gowda said.
The minister said the message Karnataka wants to convey is simple. “We have to reacquaint ourselves with Millets. Incorporating this crop in our diet is one of the panacea for most health aliments we face today. For the past 4 years, this has been the main mission of the Agriculture Department of Karnataka,” he added.
Karnataka has an early movers advantage by announcing an organic policy that seeks to cater to the entire organic value chain and signals the shift in emphasis from traditional agriculture, which is increasingly becoming unsustainable. The policy is a multi-level engagement that is designed to shift from traditional farming in view of recurring droughts and erosion of soil quality. In that sense, it is a very forward looking policy and provides the farmer with much-needed market linkagesnable. The state is the first in the country do so.
International Trade Fair – Organics & Millets-2018 comes in the wake of Food Industry Leader Consortium for Organics & Millets (FILCOM) organised in Bangalore by the Department of Agriculture of Karnataka, earlier this year. Many food industry leaders like Britannia, ITC, iD Fresh Foods, Pro Nature Organic foods, Mother India Farms, Phalada Agro, Sresta Natural Bioproducts Pvt. Ltd etc attended the consortium, which was organised to restore millets’ place in our everyday diet.
About the ‘International Trade Fair – Organics & Millets 2018’
The ‘International Trade Fair – Organics & Millets 2018’ is an international conference and exposition on vista of opportunities in agriculture, horticulture, processing and marketing. The event offers an excellent platform for farmers, buyers, sellers and exporters of organic produce and millets. This fair also facilitates organic product processors, manufacturers of farm equipment and others to showcase their products and expertise in organic and millet related areas.
The fair serves as an important confluence for all organic stakeholders for the promotion of trade and sharing of information and knowledge about organic agribusiness. In Karnataka, Organic & Millet farmers have been organised into 14 Regional Federations, which produces wide-ranging variety of organic and millet crops. This trade fair provides an easy platform to connect with this wide producer base. It is a one stop opportunity to source your requirement of organic and millet crops.
The International Trade Fair Organics & Millets 2018, is organised by the Department of Agriculture, Govt. of Karnataka, Karnataka State Agricultural Produce Processing and Export Corporation Limited (KAPPEC), State Agricultural Universities and Jaivik Krishik Society. International Competence Centre for Organic Agriculture (ICCOA) is the Knowledge Partner for the event. ASSOCHAM, The Associated Chambers of Commerce of India is the industry partner for the event.