Agriculture Marketing being a state subject, wholesale marketing of agriculture produce is generally carried out through a network of regulated Agriculture Produce Market Committee (APMC) markets promoted by respective Government of State/ Union Territories (UTs) under their respective State/UT APMC Act. Central Government plays a supportive role in agricultural marketing. Small and Marginal farmers sometime face difficulty in direct access to markets due to varied reasons like small amount of marketable surplus, distant markets and stringent regulatory provisions under State APMC Acts limiting direct purchase of produce by end user from farmers from farm gate and local godowns/warehouses. The lack of development of integrated supply chain and distant markets in some areas give rise to intermediation whereby intermediaries buy from farmers thus sometimes affecting farmers share in consumer price.
In order to improve and facilitate better market accessibility of farmers to markets , Government of India has been constantly persuading State/UT governments to adopt market reforms to promote alternative marketing channels such as private markets , direct marketing, contract farming, development of Gramin Agriculture Market (GrAMs) closer to farm gates as well as development of integrated supply chain infrastructure. Model APMC Act was also promoted.
The Government of India has notified an Ordinance namely “The Farmers’ Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Ordinance, 2020” on 5th June, 2020 to promote freedom of choice of trade with farmers while promoting barrier-free inter-state and intra-state trade in farmers produce.
The Government also notified an Ordinance namely “The Farmers (Empowerment and Protection) Agreement on Price Assurance and Farm Services Ordinance, 2020 on 5th June, 2020 to provide for a national framework on farming agreements that protects and empowers farmers to engage with agri-business firms, processors, wholesalers, exporters or large retailers for farm services and sale of future farming produce at a mutually agreed remunerative price framework in a fair and transparent manner.
Further, in pursuance to the announcement of Atmnirbhar Bharat Abhiyan Package, the Government has approved under Agriculture Infrastructure Fund of Rs. 1,00,000 Crore to provide a medium-long term debt financing facility for investment in viable projects for post-harvest market infrastructure including warehousing facility and community farming assets through incentives and financial support.
Government of India has also been promoting storage, cold storage, cold chain and other marketing and value addition infrastructure through its scheme of Agriculture Marketing Infrastructure (AMI), Mission for Integrated Development of Horticulture (MIDH), Rashtriya Krishi Vikas Yojana-Remunerative Approaches for Agriculture and Allied Sector Rejuvenation (RKVY-RAFTAAR) etc.
The Government has implemented National Agriculture Market (e-NAM) scheme, an online virtual trading platform, to provide farmers with opportunity to directly sell their produce at remunerative prices through competitive online bidding system. So far, 1000 wholesale regulated markets across 18 States and 3 Union Territories (UTs) have been integrated with e-NAM platform. Tradable parameters for 175 commodities have been promoted for trade in e-NAM platform.
As on 31.08.2020, a total of 1.67 crore farmers, 1.44 lakh traders and 83,958 commission agents and 1722 Farmer Producer Organizations (FPOs) have been registered on e-NAM platform. A total trade value of Rs. 1,04,313 crore has been recorded on e-NAM platform.
This information was given in a written reply by the Union Minister of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare Shri Narendra Singh Tomar in Rajya Sabha today.