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Role of Horticulture in Agriculture Development and Food Security in India

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India support more than 17 % of the population with only 2.4 % land share. At the global level, it appears that we are slowly moving towards global food crisis. Recently published special report of UN on the ?Right to Food? estimated that nearly one billion people sleep without food across the world, and among every six seconds a child dies of malnutrition. Agricultural production is an important contributor to India economy and providing nearly 67% of the country‘s employment. Over the past few years, horticulture has made remarkable progress in terms of expansion in area and production under different crops, increase in productivity, crop diversification, technological interventions for production and post-harvest and forward linkages through value addition and marketing. Despite several challenges and opportunities namely tumultuous weather, seasonal cyclones, occasional drought, demographic pressure, industrialization, urbanization and unprecedented use of insecticide & pesticide and compulsion for migration of rural masses to urban areas, especially for their livelihood. Albeit, there is a major change in various sectors of horticulture, which resulted enhance the production of horticulture 268.84 MT (2012-2013) surpassing the food grain production (255.36 MT) in the recent years. Horticulture is not merely a means of diversification but forms an integral part of food, nutritional security and poverty alleviation, and also an essential ingredient of economic security. India, like many other countries, is very concerned about food security, thus rural development has become primary area of focus in the current agricultural and horticultural development programs.

Author(s): Surajit Mitra, Amit Singh | Views(477)

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