Mumbai (Maharashtra) [India] Feb 20 (ANI/Hunk Golden and Media): India Pulses and Grains Association (IPGA), the nodal body for India's pulses trade and industry successfully hosted the fifth edition of The Pulses Conclave 2020, a three-day mega event for the global pulses trade and industry during February 12th -14th, 2020 at Aamby Valley, Lonavala, Maharashtra.
Over 500 delegates from India and across ten countries including Australia, Canada, Myanmar, Ethiopia, Uganda, Tanzania, Mozambique, Malawi, Russia, Turkey to name a few participated in the Conclave.
Key dignitaries present were Sanjeev Chadha, MD - NAFED; Sunil Kumar Singh, Additional MD - NAFED; David Marit, Minister of Agriculture, Government of Saskatchewan, Canada; Rick Burton, Dy Minister of Agriculture, Government of Saskatchewan, Canada; Ashish Bahuguna, Former Secretary - Agriculture and Former Chairperson - FSSAI, Cindy Brown, President - Global Pulses Confederation.
"The country's pulses imports have come down to 2-2.5 million tons now from a record level of 5.7 million tons in 2015-16 on the substantial increase in domestic production. We at India Pulses and Grains Association (IPGA) are committed to ensuring that India achieves nutritional security by making pulses affordable to those on or below-the-poverty-line and that can be achieved only by including the pulses into the PDS in every Indian State. IPGA will be stepping up its efforts in engaging with key Ministries like Agriculture, Consumer Affairs, Health & Family Welfare, and Commerce to discuss various initiatives to devise and implement programs that yield win-win results for farmers as well as consumers", said Jitu Bheda, Chairman, IPGA.
"In this year's Conclave, while concentrating on the global pulses scenario, we had some interesting speeches focusing on pulses research in India to improve production, policy framework in the agriculture sector as well as initiatives towards doubling farmer's income. The focus of the conclave was to brainstorm on ideas to help Indian pulses trade become a major contributor to the PM's vision of making India a USD 5 trillion economy by 2024", added Bheda.
"This is our fifth edition of IPGA. The first one was in 2012, which was a resounding success following which IPGA has come a long way with the trade, with the processors, but most importantly did a project in rural India, in a drought-prone area in Maharashtra. In these 2 particular districts of Bhokardan and Phulambari, we started a Water Rejuvenation project. We dug 25 km of trenches with the support of the local government machinery. With this initiative, in one monsoon season, we were able to rejuvenate up to 150 villages in those catchment areas. The trenches raised the groundwater level assumed to be 4 million litres. We would like to conduct pilot farms in collaboration with NAFED. We want to get certain market information whereby we will be able to forecast or predict prices during the harvest of that particular crop select those pulses and encourage the farmers to sow them and try to create the same chain by getting the processes involved with a buyback agreement", said Pravin Dongre, Director, IPGA.
"In 2018, Canada's pulses exports valued at Canadian dollars 1.8 billion and were a major contribution to the world's pulses industry. In 2018, our province produced nearly half of the world's lentils and over one-third of the world's dry peas. Saskatchewan agri-food exports to the world totalled Canadian dollars 12.9 billion in 2019. This represents 21 per cent of Canada's total agri-food exports of Canadian dollars 67.1 billion. Total Saskatchewan agri-food exports to India in 2019: Canadian dollars 329 million. However, we still have the potential to grow and export more, which includes exports to India", said David Marit, Minister of Agriculture, Govt. of Saskatchewan, Canada.
"Pulses can be positioned as plant-based protein. They offer more than just protein. Pulses should be seen as an energy source, a source of fibre and a source of important vitamins and nutrients like iron. Global Pulses Confederation is instrumental in working with members of the United Nations to declare 2016 as the International Year of Pulses. The contribution that pulse crops made towards achieving the sustainable development goals of the UN is fast and diverse. Pulses will improve health and nutrition in the global population by contributing to a food system that sustainably provides to all the nutritional needs", said Cindy Brown, President, Global Pulses Confederation.
"It's a good initiative for doing cluster farms. We have a Private Procurement Stockist government scheme and I would like that to be encouraged first. If not, NAFED is there to provide IPGA the safety net of ensuring Minimum Support Price to the farmers for the produce that they have grown", said Sunil Kumar Singh, Additional Managing Director, NAFED, who concluded by complimenting IP-GA's efforts for the Water Rejuvenation project.
The Pulses Conclave 2020, as a part of its agenda, discussed increasing domestic production and consumption and also brought to fore other areas of the trade like improving processing efficiencies, increasing consumption, exports, value addition, protein extraction, post-harvest crop management, etc.
Also, GFI India and IPGA collaborated for The Pulses Conclave 2020 to stimulate the pulses innovation ecosystem in India. The goal of this collaboration is to stimulate the innovation ecosystem in the country for novel food product development utilizing pulses, with a view to creating lucrative end markets for farmers, processors, and traders, and to targeting malnutrition and food insecurity at diverse levels of the income pyramid.
Two of the key panels; Product Innovation in Pulses: Spotlight on Alternative Proteins and Pulses and Retail Packing & Branding - Challenges & Opportunities discussed critical points relevant to the current industry scenario.
"As the world moves towards sustainability, we have to see more organic and ethical options for alternative protein consumption, which can particularly supply to the human need for nutrition. Pulses can be that alternative. There are many forms in which pulses can be deconstructed rather than the lone solid form", said Varun Deshpande, Managing Director, Good Food Institute.
"Ten states in India account for 70 per cent of dal consumption of the country. Studies show that there is no national brand. Local brands and loose sold pulses are a challenge for national brand building", said Dilip Mohanty from Reliance Retail.
Some of the other key highlights of the fifth edition of The Pulses Conclave 2020 were:
Presentations during the three day mega event included:
- Indian Pulses Gearing up to Walk the Last Mile by Dr Hanish Sinha, National Bulk Handling Corporation
- Overview of Indian Pulses Sector by Saurabh Bhartia - Glencore Agriculture
- Strategies to boost pulses production and consumption in India by G Chandrashekhar, Senior Editor and Policy Commentator
- Origin Presentation: Canada by Rav Kapoor - ETG Commodities Inc.
- Kabuli Chick Peas - India Overview with exports focus by Harsha Rai - Mayur Global Corporation
- Origin Presentation: Myanmar by ShyamNarsaria - Arvee International
- Origin Presentation: Australia by Sanjiv Dubey - Graintrend Pty Ltd.
- Nutrition Value Extraction for Consumer Benefit by Huseyin Arslan - AGT Foods & Ingredients
- Pulse processing - unveiling the attractive Indian income tax and fiscal opportunities by Aashish Kasad, Partner - Ernst &Young - Tax and Regulatory services; India Region Tax Leader - Chemicals and Agriculture sector
- Pulses Procurement and Distribution by Sunil Kumar Singh, Additional MD - NAFED
- Mumbai Port Trust Presentation by Gautam Dey, Sr Dy Traffic Manager - Mumbai Port Trust
- Origin Presentation: USA by Jeff Van Pevenage - Columbia Grain Inc.
- Origin Presentation: East Africa by Dharmendra Rao Pothuri - International Trade Centre
- Origin Presentation: Russia / Black Sea by Jonathan Grange, Sunstone Brokers SA
This story is provided by Hunk Golden and Media. ANI will not be responsible in any way for the content of this article. (ANI/Hunk Golden and Media)