Agriculture World

91 Government APMCs Are Running Into Loss, Study Reveals; Concern over Farmer’s Interest

Pronami Chetia
Pronami Chetia

Around 91 Agriculture Produce Market Committees (APMCs) established by the government to ensure farmer’s interest are running into losses, reveals a recent study conducted by the Maharashtra State Agriculture Marketing Board (MSAMB).

According to senior officials of the board, the MSAMB has recommended and accordingly sent a proposal to the state marketing directorate for the closure of 41 APMCs which include APMCs located in Marathwada, Konkar, North and Western Maharashtra. As per reports, the 305 APMCs in Maharashtra were established with an aim of providing a secure marketing system for farmers. The APMCs was established by the state government for regulating the marketing of different kinds of agricultural produce for the same market area or any part thereof.

What is APMC?

An Agricultural Produce Market Committee is a marketing board established by a state government in India to ensure farmers are safeguarded from exploitation by large retailers, as well as ensuring the farm to retail price spread does not reach excessively high levels. The first sale of agriculture produce can occur only at the market yards (mandis) of APMC. Moreover, the concept of agriculture produce market regulation program in India dates back to British period as raw cotton was the first farm produce to attract the attention of the Government due to anxiety of British rulers to make available the supplies of pure cotton at reasonable prices to the textile mills of Manchester (UK).

The Maharashtra Agricultural Produce Marketing (Development & Regulation) Act was passed in the year 1963, with a view to regulate the marketing of agricultural produce in market areas. Moreover, the market committees are engaged in development of market yards for the benefit of agriculturists and buyers. Various agricultural produce commodities are regulated under the Act.

Currently, there are 305 APMCs with main markets and 624 submarkets. During 2017-18, as per income out of 305 APMCs, the contribution of 282 APMCs was fixed to Rs 35.38 crore.

MSAMB MD Sunil Pawar said that the marketing board had only surveyed and studied the facts, and submitted the report to the director of marketing and that he is the regulatory authority to take the proper call.

The APMC Act mandates that these markets must have facilities like auction halls, warehouses, weighbridges, shops for retailers, police station, post office, bore-wells, farmer amenity centers, and a soil-testing laboratory.

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