Need to revamp agri-horti sector

The horticulture department of Arunachal is participating in the ‘Gulfood 2021’ event in Dubai in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). Arunachal is showcasing some of its agri/horti value-added products. Report has come that many B2B meetings between delegates of Arunachal and big companies dealing with fruits and vegetables are taking place. The state government, in particular the horticulture department, deserves to be applauded for the initiative. Dubai is an important business destination. If Arunachal manages to get an entry into Dubai’s market, it will open opportunities for the rest of the world, especially Europe and the US.

One of the main reasons for the failure of the agri-horti sector in the state is lack of marketing. The farmers do not get proper markets, due to which they suffer losses. Of late, the Arunachal Pradesh Agriculture Marketing Board has been making efforts to provide market links to the farmers. Even though the effort of the board is appreciated, much work is still to be done to truly harness the potential of the state. Also, the role of departments like horticulture, agriculture, animal husbandry, etc, is still questionable in the state. These departments have failed to fully support the farmers. Most of the schemes under them have not benefitted the true farmers. Political interference and lack of transparency in implementation of schemes have yielded poor results. The state government needs to fully revamp the working culture of these departments for better output.