Organic farming has been practiced for many thousand years ago in India. These days, people from all walks of life are more than ready to invest nutritious and chemical free product that can enrich their overall health in the long run, and are doing their bit to promote healthy living within the society. The basic aim of Organic Farming is to maintain human welfare without affecting the environment and follows the principles of health and care for all including soil.
In today’s world practice of organic farming has a combination of tradition, innovation and science.
Agriculture and allied sector accounts for 16% of the country’s GDP, 14% of overall exports and provides employment to over 55% of the workforce in the country.
In order to achieve this objective, various schemes & programmes have been launched by the government with emphasis on improving farm productivity, enhancing agricultural research, education and extension enabling development, infusion of appropriate technologies and improving the Sustainability. The Government of India has implemented the National Programme for Organic Production (NPOP) in the year 2001. The national programme involves the accreditation programme for certification agencies, norms for organic production, promotion of organic farming etc. States like; Uttaranchal, Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Gujarat, Rajasthan, Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Nagaland, Mizoram, Sikkim have been promoting organic farming. Organic produces are increasingly preferred by developed countries and major urban centers in India. Huge demand for Indian organic products especially Herbs, Oilseeds, Spices, Tea, coffee etc. in the international market. A special class of consumers is also emerging in the domestic market who requires quality food.
*Sikkim has been declared first Organic State in 2016
According to WHO, the total global organic food market presently is around $37 billion. Of this $14 billion market is for herbal plants and medicines, which is expected to reach $5 trillion by the year 2050. According to the International Fund for Agriculture and Development (IFAD), India has more than 15,000 certified organic farms. Organic farms are generally more profitable and environmentally friendly, as it uses fewer chemicals and the residue is comparatively less chemical-intensive. Organic food has many ecological benefits as well as it delivers nutritious food. As per several studies report it shows that practicing organic systems over a long period of time can outdo the conventional methods. It should be implemented by all the organizations who are working in the organic food business they must increase the awareness the benefit of Organic products. cultivation is an organic state. By 2030, Meghalaya, another northeast state of India also eyes to convert 200,000 hectares of land into organic cultivation. In Kerala, more than 100,000 farmers are adopting organic farming practices.
Currently, there is low awareness at the producer level on the difference between conventional farming and organic farming. At the consumer level, there is confusion between natural and organic products and a limited understanding of the health benefits of organic food products. In addition, consumers are faced with a plethora of decisions around brands — imported or domestic, product quality, the authenticity of claims and certifications. It is critical for companies involved in the organic food business to increase awareness among consumers in non-metro cities. Progressively, people across all income groups should have access to organic food. This can be facilitated by different means such as establishing community-supported agricultural farms or with “grow your own food” programmes. Where penetration is low, smaller sized packs can help encourage trials.