Modi’s government is now working in mission mode to reduce the country’s reliance on edible oil imports. Prime Minister Narendra Modi also stated at the meeting of the Sixth Governing Council of NITI Aayog (NITI Aayog) that despite being an agricultural country, India imports approximately Rs 65,000-70,000 crore of edible oil per year. The Prime Minister said that this money spent on imports can be taken into account by the farmers of the country.
In this sense, along with an increase in the production of edible oil from different sources, public knowledge of the economic consumption of oil will also be spread. According to experts, the goal of this new mission of the Modi Government is not only to ensure self-sufficiency in the case of edible oil, but also to place the money of the farmers on the import of its imports.
19 Thousand Crores Will Be Spent on National Oil Seed Mission in 5 Years
There is a proposal to invest around Rs 19,000 crore on the National Oil Seed Mission in the next five years. A senior official of the Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers of the Union said that the preparations for the mission are free and will take place from 1 April in the next financial year.
India imports approximately 150 lakh tons of edible oil per year, while domestic production is approximately 70-80 lakh tons. With the country’s increasing population, consumption of edible oil will also increase further. In such a scenario, achieving such self-sufficiency in edible oil is a major target. But Dr. Trilocham Mohapatra, Director-General of the Indian Council for Agricultural Research (ICAR), says that there is a high chance of success in mission-mode work.
Farmers Should Be Encouraged to Cultivate Pulses and Oilseeds
He said that more focus will be put on increasing productivity along with acreage in order to increase the production of oilseeds in the country. Dr. Mahapatra said that there are around 110 lakh hectares of land in the eastern part of the country, which remains empty after the paddy crop has been harvested, so the region can be increased by growing mustard. Apart from this, in northern India, like Punjab and Haryana, where water is scarce, farmers can be encouraged to grow pulses and oilseeds instead of crops such as paddy, wheat and sugar cane.
Dr. Mahapatra said that if farmers get the minimum support price (MSP) for oilseeds and high yielding seeds, like paddy and wheat, then they are involved in increasing these crops.
Now Emphasis is Being Given on Increasing Palm Farming
According to the ICAR report, there are 20 agro-ecological regions in the country which are divided into 60 agro-ecological zones. Dr. Mahapatra said that the seed varieties are prepared for the cultivation of acceptable crops in the particular climate of the area, which raises yields. He said that India imports the most palm oil, but the focus is not on increasing palm cultivation in the economy, which will help to make it self-sufficient.
A total of nine oilseed crops are grown each year in India. Their annual production has increased by more than 300 lakh tons over the last 4 years and is growing year on year. They also include oilseeds and oils, which are used only in industry but often used as edible oils.
Mustard Production Can Be Between 110 to 120 Lakh Tons
Director of the Mustard Research Directorate in Bharatpur, Rajasthan, under the ICAR, Dr. P.K. Rai said that there is a great potential to increase oilseed production in the country and mustard can be seen as an example. He said that the focus on mustard cultivation in mission mode has increased this year and can be between 110 to 120 lakh tons due to good crop production.
You can Get Oil From the Seeds of Perennial Trees
The officials of the Ministry of Agriculture said that the production of oilseeds in the country will double in the next five years. Apart from seasonal crops, the oil obtained from the seeds of certain perennial trees in the countryside. There are secondary suppliers of oil. A senior official of the Ministry of Agriculture confirmed that the goal of improvement has been set at all stages. Four submissions have been set up for the National Oil Seeds Mission, which is as follows:
Increase oil production from primary sources – This includes plans to increase the production of soybean, mustard, groundnut, sunflower, sesame, safflower, and ramtil.
Increasing oil production from secondary sources – this involves crops that are not produced primarily for oil, but as a by-product of oil. For example, Cotton oil, Linseed oil, Brian Rice oil, etc.
Establishment of processing units for oilseed production – in the areas where oilseeds are grown, provision made for the development of processing units so that farmers can get the price of their oilseeds.
Consumer awareness – Awareness drive to make consumers aware of the benefits of economic oil use.
Experts say that oil intake is gradually rising with the country’s growing population, but research by the Indian Medical Research Council (ICMR) advises a person to eat 30 grams of oil a day. As a result, per capita, oil consumption will be around 11 kg per year. Whereas according to the 2017 report, the annual per capita intake of oil in the country is 19.3 kg.