India produces 200 million tons of vegetables

India is one of the largest producers of milk, eggs, poultry meat, fruits and vegetables in the world.
India is one of the largest producers of milk, eggs, poultry meat, fruits and vegetables in the world.

By the end of this year, vegetable production would be within a touching distance of 200 million tons, with horticulture output at 330 million tons, as per IANS-CVoter Issues That Dominated India 2021.

This is an indicator of the horticulture revolution that is sweeping across India. The good news is that data since 2005 clearly shows poor and lower income households consuming more vegetables, eggs and milk. The bad news is the farmer still gets a pittance for the produce. 70 per cent Indians feel MSP should be given to these crops.

Even as Indians were arguing with each other over the 375 day blockade of highways leading to Delhi over farm laws, hardly anyone was talking about horticulture. India is already the largest, if not one of the largest producers of milk, eggs, poultry meat, fruits and vegetables in the world.

But that helps neither the farmer at the beginning of the food supply chain nor the consumer in the urban areas who pays through her nose. We often hear stories of farmers simply dumping their tomato, onion and other crops on roads as they can't find buyers at any price.

India is one of the largest producers of milk, eggs, poultry meat, fruits and vegetables in the world.Unsplash

That is because only 10 per cent of India's vegetables and fruits are processed while another 30 per cent simply rots away because there are no cold storage facilities. Only large private sector investors have the resources to build global scale food processing plants and cold storage facilities that will add tremendous value to the crop produced by farmers. But with farm leaders like Tikait looming in the horizon with their "lathis", which global or Indian investor would take the risk and the plunge?

Like agriculture, even the horticulture sector needs sweeping reforms. But that moment passed in 2021 with the 375 day blockade. (IANS/SP)

(Keywords : fruits, vegetables, production, tons, horticulture, indicator, consumer, farmer, Indians, supply chain, processed, cold storage, value, crop, buyers.)

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