Agriculture of India is the top producer of milk, spices, pulses, tea, cashew and jute, and the second-largest producer of rice, wheat, oilseeds, fruits and vegetables, sugarcane and cotton. In spite of all these facts, the average productivity of many crops in India is quite low.
- 54.6 per cent of the population is engaged in agriculture and allied activities (census 2011).
- It contributes 17.4 per cent to the country’s Gross Value Added for the year 2016-17 (at current prices).
- Three constituent departments of the Ministry of Agriculture are:
- Department of Animal Husbandry, Dairying & Fisheries (DAHD&F),
- Department of Agricultural Research and Education (DARE) and
- Department of Agriculture, Cooperation and Farmers’ Welfare (DAC&FW).
Pradhan Mantri Krishi Sinchayee Yojana (PMKSY)
- The scheme has been approved with an outlay of ₹ 50,000 crores for a period of 5 years (2015-16 to 2019-20).
- The major objective of PMKSY is to expand cultivable area under assured irrigation, enhance the adoption of precision irrigation and other water saving technologies (Per drop, More crop) etc.
- The mission is administered by Ministry of Water Resources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation with the Per Drop More Crop component being administered by Department of Agriculture, Cooperation and Farmers Welfare (DAC&FW).
Agriculture Credit: Interest Subvention Scheme
- Under it, interest subvention is provided on short-term crop loans upto ₹ 3 lakh for a period of one year which is made available to farmers at subvented interest rate of 7 per cent per annum and in case of timely repayment, the same gets reduced to 4 per cent per annum.
- In order to protect farmers against crop failure due to natural calamities, Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana (PMFBY) was implemented from kharif 2016 along with restructured pilot Unified Package Insurance Scheme (UPIS) and Weather Based Crop Insurance Scheme (WBCIS).
COMMISSION FOR AGRICULTURAL COSTS AND PRICES (CACP)
- CACP is mandated to advice on the price policy (MSP) of 23 crops.
- CACP submits its recommendations in the form of Price Policy Reports every year, separately for five groups of commodities namely kharif crops, rabi crops, sugarcane, raw jute and copra.
- Determinants of MSP pricing policy is rooted not in ‘cost plus’ approach, though cost is an important determinant of MSP.
INDIAN COUNCIL OF AGRICULTURAL RESEARCH (ICAR)
- ICAR is an autonomous organization under the Department of Agricultural Research and Education (DARE).
- It was established in 1929 as a registered society under the Societies Registration Act, 1860.
- With its headquarters at New Delhi, the ICAR is the apex body for coordinating, guiding, and managing research and education in agriculture including horticulture, fisheries and animal sciences.
SOIL AND WATER PRODUCTIVITY
- The National Bureau of Soil Survey and Land Use Planning (NBSS&LUP) developed NBSS BHOOMI Geo-portal to access various thematic information on major physiographic regions, sub- physiographic regions and agro-ecological regions of the country.
- The population of momordica cochinchinensis, collected from the middle Andaman Island, was described as a new subspecies Momordica cochinchinensis subsp. Andamanica, which was subsequently validated through DNA barcoding.
- Improvement of indigenous cattle breeds through selection project was conceptualized for the genetic improvement of Gir, Kankrej and Sahiwal cattle in their home tracts.
- Under network project of buffalo improvement Nli-Ravi, Bhadawari and Swamp breed centres are functioning as conservation and improvement units whereas Jaffarabadi, Pandarpuri and Surti breed centres are concentrating on field progeny testing and maintaining the elite herd for bull production and a breedable herd of 567.
- According to estimates of the Central Statistics Office (CSO), the value of output livestock sector at current prices was about ₹ 5,91,691 crore during 2015-16 which is about 28.5 per cent of the value of output from agricultural and allied sector.
- At constant prices the value of output from livestock is about 29 per cent of the value of the output from total agriculture and allied sector.
- Milk Production: India continues to be the largest producer of milk in the world. Milk production during 2016-17 and 2017-18 was 165.4 million tonnes and176.3 million tonnes respectively showing an annual growth of 6.62 per cent.
- Egg Production: Currently the total poultry population is 729.21 million (as per 19th Livestock Census) and egg production was around 88.14 billion during 2016-17.
- Wool Production: Wool production in the beginning of Twelfth Plan (2012-13 was 46.05 million kgs and increased to 48.1 million kgs in 2014-15 but declined to 43.5 million kgs in 2016-17. The production has shown negative growth during 2017-18.
- Meat Production: Meat production in the beginning of Twelfth Plan (2012-13) was 5.95 million tonnes which further increased to 7.7 million tonnes in 2017-18.
- Fisheries Production: During 2017-18, India exported ₹ 13,77,244 tonnes fish and fisheries products worth ₹ 45,106.89 crore.
NATIONAL LIVESTOCK MISSION
The National Livestock Mission was launched in 2014-15 with the following submissions:
- Sub-mission on livestock development;
- sub-mission on pig development in north-eastern region;
- sub-mission on fodder and feed development; and
- Sub-mission on skill development, technology transfer and extension
- The Drugs Controller General of India regulates the quality of veterinary drugs and biologicals.
- The first livestock census was conducted during 1919-1920 and since then it is being conducted quinquennially by all states/UTs of the country.
- The 20th Livestock Census was conducted in 2019. It indicates that the livestock population in the country increased by 4.6 per cent to 536 million from 512.06 million in 2012.
- Presently India is the second-largest fish producing and second-largest aquaculture nation in the world. India is also a major producer of fish through aquaculture and ranks second in the world after China.
- The total fish production during 2017-18 (provisional) stood at 12.61 million metric tonnes (MMT) with a contribution of 8.92 MMT from inland sector and 3.69 MMT from marine sector.
- Freshwater aquaculture with a share of 34 per cent in inland fisheries in mid-1980s has increased to about 80 per cent in recent years.