In a major boost to export prospects of agricultural produce, India has achieved a significant increase of 21.8 per cent in the export of agricultural and processed food products in the 2021-22 (April-August) in comparison to the corresponding period of 2020-21.
According to the Quick Estimates released by the Directorate General of Commercial Intelligence and Statistics (DGCI&S), the overall export of Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority (APEDA) products has witnessed 21.8 per cent growth in terms of US$ during April-August 2021 over the same period of the previous year.
The overall export of APEDA products increased from USD 6,485 million in April-August 2020 to US$ 7,902 million in April-August 2021.
This rise in exports has been achieved notwithstanding Covid-19 restrictions. The huge jump in exports of agricultural and processed food products during the first five months of the current fiscal is in continuation of growth in exports witnessed in the financial year 2020-21. According to WTO’s trade map, with the total agri-exports of US$ 37 billion in the year 2019, India is ranked at 9th position in the world ranking.
Crop-wise trends of agricultural exports
The export of rice, which recorded a positive growth of 13.7 per cent, increased from US$ 3,359 million in April-August 2020 to US$ 3,820 million in April-August 2021.
As per the Quick Estimates, the exports of fresh fruits and vegetables registered a 6.1 per cent growth in terms of US$, while shipment of processed food products like cereals preparations and miscellaneous processed items reported a growth of 41.9 per cent. In April-August 2020-21, fresh fruits and vegetables were exported to the tune of US$ 1,013 million which rose to US$ 1,075 million in April-August 2021-22.
India reported a significant 142.1 per cent jump in the export of other cereals while the export of meat, dairy and poultry products witnessed an increase 31.1 per cent in the first five months of the current fiscal (2021-22).
The export of other cereals increased from US$ 157 million in April-August 2020 to US$ 379 million in April-August 2021 and the export of meat, dairy and poultry products increased from US$ 1,185 million in April-August 2020 to US$ 1,554 million in April-August 2021.
The cashew export witnessed a growth of 28.5 per cent in April-August 2021 as the export of cashew rose from US$ 144 million in April-August 2020 to US$ 185 million in April-August 2021.
APEDA initiatives to promote agri exports
The initiatives taken by APEDA, which functions under the Ministry of Commerce, has helped the country achieve this milestone at a time when most of the business activities suffered a huge setback due to the restrictions imposed after the outbreak of second wave of the Covid-19 pandemic.
APEDA has taken various initiatives for the export promotion of agricultural and processed food products such as organising B2B exhibitions in different countries, exploring new potential markets through product-specific and general marketing campaigns by the active involvement of Indian embassies.
APEDA has also taken several initiatives to promote products having registered geographical indications (GI) in India by organising virtual buyer-seller meets on agricultural and food products with UAE and on GI products. APEDA is continuing with the initiative of conducting virtual buyer-seller meets (VBSM) with potential importing countries to popularise the GI products of major agricultural commodities exported.
In order to ensure seamless quality certification of products to be exported, APEDA has recognised 220 labs across India to provide services of testing to a wide range of products and exporters.
APEDA also assists in the up-gradation and strengthening of recognised laboratories for export testing and residue monitoring plans. APEDA also provides assistance under the financial assistance schemes of infrastructure development, quality improvement and market development for boosting the export of agricultural products.
APEDA organises the participation of exporters in the International Trade Fairs, which provide a platform to the exporters to market their food products in the global marketplace. APEDA also organises national events like AAHAR, Organic World Congress, BioFach India among other activities to promote agri-exports.
APEDA also initiates registration of pack-houses for horticulture products for meeting the quality requirements of the international market. Registration of exports units for peanut shelling and grading and processing units, for instance, is to ensure quality adherence for the EU and non-EU countries.
APEDA carries out registration of meat processing plants and abattoirs for ensuring compliance with the global food safety and quality requirements. Another key initiative includes the development and implementation of traceability systems that ensure the food safety and quality compliances of the importing countries. For boosting exports, APEDA compiles and disseminates various international trade analytical information, market access information amongst exporters and address trade enquiries.
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