Daily Current Affairs – 7th October, 2016Devendra Vishwakarma
Partnership approach to double the farm income
In an unprecedented initiative, the government has set an ambitious target of doubling farmers’ income. However, this needs a new redefined approach of fortifying partnerships amongst stakeholders to make this target a reality.
- To boost the agricultural sector, the government has set goal of doubling farmers’ income by 2022.
- To achieve it, it has unveiled various strategies like focus on irrigation for quality inputs, investments in warehousing and cold chains, promotion of food processing and crop insurance schemes, among others.
- However, the basic need is to transform the agriculture sector from production-driven system to a demand-driven food value chain.
Making the transformation possible
- For such transformational impact, there will have to be new approaches, innovations, and increasing alignment and collaboration with all stakeholders in the food system.
- Integrated value chains that connect farm to plate, competitive markets that provide better prices to farmers and an enabling environmentthat supports innovation and action will be required.
- However, this will require collaboration between all the stakeholders government, private sector or civil society. None of them can work solitarily as newer realities like climate change and increasing pressure on land and water resources will have to be tackled by forging partnerships and consensus.
- So, there should be combining of competencies of diverse organizations and stakeholders to create better alignment through partnership platforms which can generate much greater impact.
- It includes leveraging of greater investments, development of new innovative collaboration models that combine knowledge and resources of diverse stakeholders and sharing of best practices, risks and mutual accountability for results.
Role model States
- Such partnerships are being developed in states like Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka and Maharashtra.
- These state-level platforms bring together government + private sector + farmer organizations + society to create a shared vision and jointly develop solutions for integrated value chain projects that will provide more opportunities for farmers.
- Currently, more than 20 organizations are engaged in these state partnerships ranging across the value chain from input companies toprocessors and retailers and from global multinational corporations to local small and medium enterprises and farmer producer organizations.
- Maharashtra initiated this partnership model in 2012 under GoI’s public-private partnership for integrated agriculture development (PPPIAD)This programme aimed at developing an integrated value chain for specific crops.
- It has been observed that within three years, this initiative had reached half-a-million farmers and improved farmer income ranging from 10-30%. Now, the goal of reaching 2.5 million farmers by 2020 has been set.
- In Andhra Pradesh, there was a launch of a partnership platform which focused on achieving double-digit inclusive agriculture growth in the state.
- The state has identified 25 growth sectors covering agriculture, horticulture, animal husbandry, and fisheries.
- Within few months, more than $175 million in private sector commitments to support several value chain projects has been mobilized.
- Here, the government launched the public-private partnership for integrated horticulture development (PPPIHD) in December 2015.
- It was to improve horticulture value chains through value addition, technology and marketing solutions.
- It has been less than a year, yet five projects are already underway led by both global and local private sector companies.
Thus, each state level partnerships follows a unique model but they share similar guiding principles which have been developed and validated by countries around the world. These principles are:
- Alignment with the state’s goals and priorities for the sector.
- Market-driven with projects led by the private sector and rooted in viable business models
- Multi-stakeholders with open and inclusive engagement that includes all relevant stakeholders
- Holistic, integrating full value chains that benefit all actors in the food system
- Globally supported by an international network providing solidarity, connection and resources.
- These state level partnerships hold great potential for application in other states of India too. Also, many other states have indicated interest in launching similar initiatives.
- The key to such strong partnership lies in strong leadership and co-creation with the
- Government setting the vision and enabling policy framework.
- The private sector helping to deliver on that vision through scalable, inclusive market-based activity.
- Key stakeholders such as farmer organizations, civil society and international organizations combining their resources and expertise.
- Such strong leadership from multiple stakeholders can create the conditions needed for unlocking the entrepreneurship capability of small farmers and ultimately boosting their income.
- Hence, for a bigger picture to transform the agriculture sector, the agriculture sector needs to move from a production-driven system to a demand-driven food value chain that increasingly connects the consumer to the producers.
Connecting the dots:
- Doubling the farmers’ income is a goal whose onus lies on collaborative approach between its stakeholders. Examine
- Farmers have to increase their scope of income and not only rely on farm produce. Do you think it is possible? Discuss
Farewell to NAM