Agricultural research plays important role in food security: Union Minister Tomar

September 18, 2021 7:46 p.m. STI

New Delhi [India]Sep 18 (ANI): Union Agriculture and Farmers Welfare Minister Narendra Singh Tomar says agricultural research has played an important role in solving the problem of food security, l improving farmers’ and farmers’ incomes and ensuring sustainable use of natural resources for people’s livelihoods.
Addressing a session on “Research as a driver of sustainability” at the G-20 agriculture ministerial meeting hosted by Italy, the minister said research contributes significantly three aspects of food security – availability, access and affordability.
“Agricultural research has played an important role in solving the problem of food security, improving the incomes of farmers and farmers and the sustainable use of natural resources for the livelihoods of people. Research contributes significantly to the three aspects of food security – availability, access and affordability,” he said in a statement.
The Union Minister also said that agricultural research in India has played a major role in transforming the country from food importer to exporter.
“Integrated research efforts can develop a set of techniques and methodologies to improve soil productivity, water management for storage, expansion and efficiency. Technological advancement is the key to solving the challenges facing humanity,” he said.
“Today, with an annual production of 308 million tons of food grains, India is not only in food security but also serving the needs of other countries. India has witnessed a revolution in the field of agricultural products due to the efficiency research of scientists.Oilseeds Technology Mission has doubled the production of oilseeds in 10 years.India has made great strides in the production of pulses in recent times thanks to the introduction of new varieties into the seed system. Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi’s call in this regard has had a special effect,” the minister added.
The Minister of Agriculture further explained that by 2030-31, India’s population is expected to exceed 150 crores, for which the demand for food grains is then estimated to be around 350 million tons. Likewise, the demand for edible oils, milk and dairy products, meat, eggs, fish, vegetables, fruits and sugar will increase significantly.
“In comparison, natural resources are limited and there is also the challenge of climate change. The strategy to meet the increased demand revolves around increasing productivity and increasing farmers’ incomes. Agriculture contributes to the three greatest challenges of the 21st century – achieving food security, climate change adaptation and climate change mitigation,” Tomar said in a statement from the Ministry of Agriculture and Farmer Welfare.
Important resources such as water, energy and land are running out fast. There is a need for sustainability in agriculture while simultaneously increasing production and incomes, adapting to climate change by balancing crop, livestock, fisheries and agroforestry systems, increasing the resource efficiency, protecting the environment and maintaining ecosystem services.
Tomar said that to make the country self-sufficient, concerted efforts in agricultural research on genomics, digital agriculture, climate-smart technologies and methods, water-use efficiency equipment, variety development high-efficiency and environmentally friendly, systematic production, quality and safety standards will continue.
“There is a need to rethink and adapt agricultural research and development, as well as increased investment in scientific research, to achieve adequate and nutritious food and environmental sustainability. Working in this direction , we have developed and released 17 different crop varieties that are resistant to biotic and abiotic stresses,” he said.
“Similarly, ICAR is developing biofortified varieties to meet the nutritional needs of the people. The National Mission on Sustainable Agriculture has been launched which promotes integrated farming systems approach in agriculture. India will continue its efforts to cooperate in the exchange of best practices, in research and development and programmatic interventions to increase productivity through the promotion of trade and the development of agricultural value chains, the sustainable use of natural resources for the benefit of people,” added the minister.
Apart from the Minister of Agriculture, the Indian delegation included Dr. Abhilaksh Likhi, Additional Secretary, Ministry of Agriculture and Union Farmers Welfare, Joint Secretary Alaknanda Dayal, Dr. B Rajender and senior Indian embassy officials. (ANI)

Lana T. Arthur