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Farmers may soon get 20% higher MSP on organic produce

The government in India is considering bringing the organic produce under the minimum support price (MSP) system to encourage pesticide-free farming in the country. It is important to mention that presently there is no support price for the organic produce, except in Sikkim state for the horticulture items.

In a recent meeting, the agriculture ministry discussed upon offering 20 percent higher MSP for the organic farm produce over the non-organic or traditional ones. An official who was part of the discussion told that a detailed presentation was made in this regard by the concerned ministry.

On the other hand, States with continued organic farming asked for other ways like geotagging of the organic area, with the specific logo for organic produce and issuing unique IDs to growers to ensure traceability of organic farms.

Besides the 8 north-eastern states which included ‘fully organic’ Sikkim, 10 others states also took part in the discussion and gave their suggestions regarding MSP and minimum procurement plan for organic produce. So far, 23 lakh hectares has been brought under certified organic farming in India.

Kavitha Kuruganti of Alliance for Sustainable and Holistic Agriculture (ASHA) said, “I think procurement of organic produce will be very useful. It will help those farmers who end up selling their high quality organic produce as non-organic produce in absence of a market”.  She further called the issue very tricky as the MSP mostly covers production cost. Also the organic farmers get price of their produce on quality basis. Kuruganti said since the production cost of organic produce is low; the MSP route will not provide a good price to the farmers.



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