India’s horticultural crops output reach a record level of 283 million tonne in 2014 – 15 thus surpassing the foodgrains output for the third consecutive years.
New Delhi, Dec 31:
India’s horticultural crops mostly consisting of mostly fruits and vegetables production has reached a record level of 283 million tonne in 2014 – 15 thus surpassing the foodgrains output for the third consecutive years. This has been achieved notwithstanding deficient rainfall last year and unseasonal rains in early this year.
According to Horticultural Statistics, 2015 released by ministry of agriculture today, the country produced 168 million tonne of vegetables and 88 million tonne of fruits in 2014 – 15 (July-June). The country also produced 17.1 milion tonne of plantation crops, 5.9 million tonne of spices and 2.3 million tonne of flowers.
The country’s production of fruits and vegetables rose marginally in 2014 – 15 in comparison to the previous year. However the horticultural output was more than 257 million tonne of foodgrains output during 2014 – 15.
In 2012 – 13, the horticulture crops production (268.8 million tonne) surpassed foodgrain output (257 mt) for the first time. The trend continued even in next year with horticulture production (277.4 mt) thus crossing surpassing foodgrain output (265 mt).
The area under horticulture farming increased from 12.8 million hectares in 1991-92 to 23.41 million hectare during 2014-15, the data released by agriculture ministry said. Total production during this period rose by more than 194%. India is now only second to China in the production of fruits and vegetables.
“We have achieved record horticultural crops production despite deficient rainfall last year which was followed by unseasonal rains earlier this year,” agriculture minister Radha Mohan Singh said. He said that the horticultural output data will help policy planners, farmers and other stake holders.
For getting accurate data on horticultural production, the agriculture ministry has launched Coordinated Programme on Horticulture Assessment and Management using geoiNformatics (CHAMAN) under which scientific methodologies of Remote Sensing and Sample Survey is being used for assessment of area and production of major horticulture crops.
According to an agriculture ministry official, the horticulture produce has surpassed foodgrain output in last three years mainly because of thrust given to horticultural crops in the 11th Plan (2007-2012) through NHM, Horticulture Mission for North East & Himalayan States (HMNEH), National Bamboo Mission (NBM), etc.
An official said that implementation of National Horticulture Mission paved the way for adoption of cluster-based approach for the development of horticulture crops through linking with creation of infrastructure for post harvest management and marketing.
According to agriculture ministry data, between 2005-06 and 2013-14, allocations to the tune of Rs 14,487 crore were provided under NHM, which has led to the output of horticulture crops rising across the country.
Besides, under the mission mode, a cold chain capacity of about 32 million tonne was created as horticulture crops are highly perishable. An agriculture ministry official said around 11 lakh farmers have been trained so far on improved horticulture practices.