New Delhi: To harness the exports potential of agricultural and processed food products of cooperatives as well Farmer Producer Organizations (FPOs), a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed on 12 July 2021 between the Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority (APEDA) and National Agricultural Cooperative Marketing Federation of India Ltd (NAFED).
This MoU will focus on the key areas of cooperation facilitating APEDA registered exporters getting assistance under all the Govt. of India schemes implemented through NAFED, also ensuring sustainability and growth of exports by Cooperatives by addressing issues such as technology, skill, quality products, and market access in the states of Maharashtra, U.P., Kerala, Nagaland, Tamil Nadu, Assam, Punjab, Karnataka, Gujarat, Rajasthan, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Manipur, Sikkim, Uttarakhand, M.P., Mizoram, and Meghalaya have finalized the State-specific Action Plan for exports while the action plans of other States are at different stages of finalization.
The collaborations between APEDA, which functions under the Ministry of Commerce & NAFED, registered under the Multi-State Co-operative Societies Act, also support engaging Cooperatives involved in agricultural production for improving the quality of Agri-produce and its consolidation for better price realization to the farmers.
APEDA would facilitate exports by the Cooperatives, FPO’s, partners, and associates identified and promoted by NAFED, followed by the participation of Farmers’ Cooperatives in global trade including B2B & B2C fairs to be organized in India and abroad and also to mutually cooperate in international business development & promotions.
The MoU also entails assisting with capacity building of Cooperative Societies, Self-Help Groups (SHGs) for their social & environmental compliances, and skilling as per international standards. Both the organizations would organize awareness programs Skill Development Programmes and Workshops at Regional, State, and National levels.
APEDA and NAFED have also agreed to work in close coordination towards sustainable Cluster development of the clusters in various States notified under Agri Export policy.
The MoU was signed by Dr. M. Angamuthu, Chairman APEDA, and Mr. Sanjeev Kumar Chadha, Managing Director, NAFED for utilizing both the organizations’ expertise to mutually work together and synergize the activities in the interest of agriculture and allied sectors for bringing better value to the stakeholders.
The exports policy, therefore, suggests adopting the approach of developing product-specific clusters in different agro-climatic zones of the country to help in dealing with various supply-side issues viz., soil nutrients management, higher productivity, adoption of a market-oriented variety of crop, use of Good Agriculture Practices (GAP), etc.
APEDA has been engaged with State Governments for the implementation of AEP
NAFED is creating a honey network, aiming to bring all the FPOs associated with honey production for creating requisite infrastructure under the National Beekeeping and Honey Mission FPOs across Jammu & Kashmir, Punjab, Haryana, Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, and Uttar Pradesh.
Currently, around 65 FPOs will be part of the honey corridor linking northwest to north-eastern regions. NAFED is, NAFED’s subsidiary Federation of Indian FPOs and Aggregators (FIFA) is partnering with FPOs and the private sector.