Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar on Thursday urged farmers and entrepreneurs to take full advantage of the potential of the coconut sector. The minister, on the occasion of the World Coconut Day, said India — which ranks third in the world — has made great progress in the field of coconut, both in production and productivity.
The country’s coconut production stood at 21,207 million nuts during 2020-21, which is 34 per cent of the global production. The productivity of 9,687 nuts per hectare is also the highest in the world, he said, adding that new coconut products and industries are growing due to which farmers are getting employment. Stating that coconut has had a strong impact on the country’s economy, Tomar urged “the farmers and entrepreneurs to take full advantage of the potential of the coconut sector”.
He assured that the central government is standing with farmers in their efforts. Farm exports will increase if the agricultural produce is of quality and as per global standards, an official statement said. With increasing the agri-budget significantly, the minister said the benefit of minimum selling price is being given to the farmers. The government celebrated World Coconut Day to commemorate the foundation day of the International Coconut Community (ICC), an intergovernmental organization of coconut producing countries under the aegis of the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (UN-ESCAP).
Minister of State for Agriculture Shobha Karandlaje said, “Since the farmers are small and marginal, the future of our domestic coconut industry lies in our ability to aggregate and pool farm level coconut production, take up processing and value addition for better income realisation and give major thrust to product diversification and finding industrial utilisation of various by-products and their value addition. Minister of State for Agriculture Kailash Choudhary said the government is also providing benefits to coconut growers to increase their income. Agriculture Secretary Sanjay Agarwal, Coconut Development Board Chairman Rajbir Singh were among others present at the event.