The writer is chair professor for agriculture at ICRIER. Views are personal
Reforms to domestic market regulations and direct benefit transfers for vulnerable sections of the population could be the win-win solution.
Only 21 per cent of India’s milk production gets processed through the organised sector and the rest passes through unorganised small players. And that’s where the crisis is most intense.
An efficient and sustainable solution for better prices really lies in ‘getting the markets right’ by overhauling the agri-marketing infrastructure and its associated laws.
A single national agriculture market, promised by the BJP in its 2014 manifesto, remains a pipe dream. Can the government reform the broken APMC structure in the last year of its term?
Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana does not inspire confidence of farmers. They have to wait for months, sometimes years to get compensation.
Government is nowhere close to fulfilling the promises made in BJP’s 2014 manifesto — profitability of cultivation has fallen and dominance of Food Corporation of India continues.
Raising agricultural exports requires the government to unburden policy of consumer bias. A balance should be struck between meeting the needs of food-insecure consumers and income-insecure farmers.
Schemes to ensure that farmers get fair returns will come a croppper unless trade and tariffs are synced with minimum support prices.
Loan waivers and increased MSP will provide temporary relief to Maharashtra farmers. The state needs to explore alternative cropping patterns, modes of irrigation.
Unless government takes bold decisions on agri-markets, reducing production costs and increasing demand, its goal to double farmers’ incomes by 2022 will remain a pipe-dream.
Operation Greens must build forward and backward linkages between farmers and markets. It can learn from Operation Flood.
Government’s claim that it has given support prices that are 50 per cent over input costs to farmers is a sleight of hand. Tall talk could increase farmer resentment
Price deficiency payment schemes in Madhya Pradesh and Haryana do not cover farmers’ losses. Telangana’s input support scheme deserves nation-wide emulation.
Doubling farmers’ income by 2022 will require the Modi government to do much better than it has done in the past four years. The present government lags behind its predecessors in agricultural growth.
Farmers have suffered in the last three-and-a-half years. For the prime minister and the BJP, agricultural reforms make both economic and political sense.
PM has asked them to halve urea consumption by 2022. But this cannot be achieved till the price of the fertiliser remains artificially low.
A robust futures market helps China’s farmers get better prices for their produce. India must begin by allowing prospecting only for non-sensitive commodities.
Onion farmers have suffered even in a bumper crop year. Needed: Scientific storage facilities, a judicious trade policy.
India can be competitive in cereals, pulses and oilseeds trade if policymakers invest in creating value chains. Policies that restrict exports should go
India must curb intellectual property rights violations, like the one on herbicide tolerant Bt cotton, in order to become an innovation hub.
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