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India has enough land for farming but there are other bigger issues to worry about

Posted by BigHaat India on

One of the fears that has been raised in the aftermath of the government promulgating an ordinance to amend the Land Acquisition Act is that land will be taken away for other purposes and given that, the amount of land used for farming will come down dramatically. This is a very specious argument that is being made. Data from World Bank shows that around 60.3 percent of India's land area is agricultural land. The bank defines agricultural land as “share of land area that is arable, under permanent crops, and under permanent pastures.” In fact India has the second largest agricultural land...

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Horticultural output seen at a record 300 mT in 2016-17

Posted by BigHaat India on

Production of horticultural crops for the year 2016-17 (July-June) is pegged at a record 300 million tonnes (mt), with fruits and vegetables witnessing a significant increase in output due to abundant rains and rise in area. According to the third advance estimates of horticultural production, released by the government on Thursday, the area under cultivation went up by 2.6 per cent to 25.1 million hectares (ha) from 24.5 million ha in 2015-16. All major staple vegetables -- onion, potato and tomato – have registered an increase in output. While onion output in 2016-17 is projected at 21.72mt, 3.8 per cent...

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Ensuring Seed Quality

Posted by BigHaat India on

From more efficient testing methods to high-speed seed counters with imaging capabilities, seed testing is rapidly becoming a critical player in the seed sector today. Seed is a valuable investment today. Prices for a bag of corn or soybean seed are higher than ever before. Growers want to ensure they are protecting that investment to the best of their ability. “Seed testing is more important than ever before because the price of seed corn, as an example, is so high; seed companies want accurate information on that seed bag so they can make sure the farmer they sell the seed...

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Rebooting the idea of the farm economy

Posted by BigHaat India on

Addressing the annual general meeting (AGM) of ITC Ltd last month, chairman Y.C. Deveshwar signalled to shareholders of the company that future fortunes lay in exploiting the opportunities that would be thrown up by the impending fundamental transformation of Indian agriculture.  In an insightful speech titled “Adding value to agriculture”, Deveshwar made an observation: In future, he said, the farmer instead of selling what they produce would grow what the consumer needs.  Indeed, he is flagging an important shift. It will, for one, begin reversing the burden of risk, which at the moment is overwhelmingly weighed against the farmer. Effectively,...

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Why prices of tomatoes surged and why we are shedding onion tears

Posted by BigHaat India on

A group of street children runs after trucks and tractor trailers ferrying innumerable crates of tomatoes to Narayangaon market in Pune. The last few days have been good for these children who have been selling overripe tomatoes picked from the trash. "We sell these to small vegetable sellers and eatery owners nearby. We get Rs 15- 20 for a kilo," says Dhodu, having cutting-chai and a small packet of Parle-G biscuits. In all likelihood, Dhodu and his friends would be the only ones praying for tomato prices to stay firm for some more time. For everybody else, from farmers who did not cultivate enough...

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