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1st plenary session

Horticulture and honey products on sale at the ongoing NE Agri Expo 2010, at Dimapur on Thursday. (NP)
Published on 17 Dec. 2010 12:25 AM IST
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North-East Marketing Summit 2010 under the theme ‘Issues and challenges in Agri sector’ Plenary Session I was held with the eight sister government officials and farmers at the Hall I site, 4th Mile, Dimapur on December 16.
In the plenary session I, participants deliberated on issues of status and potentials of Agri/Horti in the north east. It was revealed that Agri and allied activities accounted for close to 30 per cent of region’s NSDP.
In base paper for NE summit it was mentioned that the North Eastern region produced only 1.5% of country’s food grains and that the demand outstripped supply in most part of the year.
It was divulged that both food grains and horticultural crops were grown across the state in NER but the potential of these crops were still untapped. According to DIPR report, it has been realized that the region has tremendous potential for cultivating horticulture crops, but its success would depend largely on development of rural horticulture i.e. efficient market and their proper network, adequate warehouses for storage, grading and sorting facilities, cold storage and processing facilities.
Vice Chancellor, Assam Agricultural University, Dr. K.M. Bujar Baruah who also chaired the session in his opening remarks said that the NER states’ need of the hour was a shift from single actor-based performance to multi-actor starring approach for tapping the potential. He stressed on the status and potential of Agri and Horti crop production in NE India. He said establishment of Regional Consultative and Monitoring bodies would help speed up the process. He added that economy of the NE India was bio-economic exploration through technology.
Earlier, two entrepreneurs from Nagaland presented two success stories during the programme. Co-ordinator, Entrepreneurs Associates, Kohima, N. Doulo stressed on success story of community marketing initiative and profit for individual sellers of Lossami junction market. He said the association slogan was ‘Like McDonald’ which meant “I’m Loving it.” To achieve such things, he said smart personalities were needed and asked the participants to think seriously with ideas while setting up such enterprises. He said that 15 years back the community market had earned 5.5 crores in the village. He mentioned that he has succeeded because of no export motive but local market, no interest on subsidy etc. Development secretary, Rongmei Baptist, Peren, Nagaland, Akina presented the experience/success of cluster approach in productions and marketing established by their association. She said most of the programmes initiated by them were ‘Wadi’ approach which was funded by NABARD.
The participants raised certain issues faced by them and asked for a tie up with each other in order to use NE Agri and allied productions in time. Member secretary, NSAMB, C. Mozhui who was also Co-Chairman of the session during his concluding remarks informed the participants that Nagaland has started cold storage in three districts and that other districts were in the pipeline.
2nd plenary session
Continuing on the issues of ‘Issues and Challenges in Agriculture Marketing’ Plenary Session II under the theme ‘Development of Agri/Horti Market – Issues and Strategies’ was conducted under the Commissioner, Rewa Division, Madhya Pradesh, Ravindor Pastor (IAS) who was also the chairman of the session held at the Agri Expo Hall I, 4th Mile, Dimapur December 16.
Ravindor while giving his opening remarks said that due to marketing system people were losing about 50, 000 agri products. He said one needed to tackle the problem with the cooporation of different enterprises/agencies.
Marketing advisor, DAC, Government of India, New Delhi, Lallan Rai stressed on ‘Reforms and Market Development’ and said that the most conflicting and strategic issue was production trends.
He said facilitatory regulations markets were necessary to promote production. He said post harvest losses of 10% of food grains and 25% to 30% was perishable as per (Millennium Study) which has now come down to 3.95% - 6% for cereals and 5.85% - 18% for fruits and vegetables as present study of ICAR. He said agriculture marketing was necessary to empower producers, provide multiple choice and attract large scale investments needed for building post harvest infrastructural. In the present market scenario, he said 80% of marketable surplus was through private trade-two million whole sellers and five million retailers in India.
Resource persons presented different topics and responded to questions posed by the participants in the function. Commissioner and secretary, horticulture, Sentiyanger IAS who was Co-Chairman concluded with the remark that awareness of remunerative prices was vital at this stage.
Meanwhile, plenary session III under the theme ‘Risk Mitigation in Agri/Horti Crops Supply Chain’ was held with Managing Director, National Horticulture Board, Gurgaon, Bijay Kumar IAS, as the chairman. The Co-Chairman was Executive Director, Mahagrapes, Sopan Kanchan.

Agri consultant from Alaska impressed by ‘Honey Fest’
Agricultural Consultant from Alaska, Stephen F. Petersen, who came on an assessment tour and visited the ‘Honey Fest’ at Agri Expo said he was impressed by the number of bee-keepers in Nagaland.
“The people of Nagaland appear to be more open to accepting new ideas and technologies” he said and observed that the beekeepers of Nagaland were progressive and receptive unlike people from other places.
Stephen said it was a great idea to mix bee-keeping with agriculture, stating bee keeping and agriculture go together and also labelled them as companions.
He expressed happiness over Nagaland emphasizing only on local bees as introduction of foreign bees might bring alien diseases. The agricultural consultant is going on tour to all the districts of Nagaland arranged by the NHBM, and as a consultant he would be sharing his views and observations to the NHBM.

Wokha leads in cashew nut processing unit
Wokha district is showing the way in the state in cashew nut processing unit. The first ever processed cashew nuts from Ronsuyan under Wokha district is being displayed at the Horticulture pavilion at the N. E Agri Expo 2010. District horticulture officer Wokha, Dr. Elithung informed that machineries for cashew nut processing has also been provided to Dimapur, Peren, Mokokchung and Longleng districts, and was optimistic that by next year processing units would also come up in these districts.
The machines and equipments were given to cashew growers with the support of NHB, Government of India through the state horticulture department after imparting 2 days training manning the processing units.

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