Farmers’ future in farming

Farmers’ protest was suspended after 378 days; ‘ghar wapasi’ from December 11. Through this, we understand how much respect the ruling government gave to these fellow farmers, some of them had died during the protest, even then, they did not step back nor cease their protest but their spirit sustains in their veins. In the history of India, the Modi-led government ruined the farmers living policy and had an attempt to curb their freedom. If things like this will happen again in the future, what would be the outcome of it?

India is mostly a farming country. Agriculture accounts for only 16 percent of GDP yet employ the most people. Officially, there are just a few hundred million farmers, but when you factor in family members who assist or occasionally farm, as well as wage employees, the total number of farmworkers is estimated to be closer to half a billion. India must transition from subsistence agriculture to more efficient, sustainable, and productive agriculture. Unfortunately, today’s agricultural policies ignore the interconnectedness of crop choices, input costs, and the supply chain, prolonging marginal farming. Furthermore, increasing food production is not the answer to creating jobs. There is adequate food, especially when calories have considered rather than micronutrients. 

Exports are possible, but they will require a lot of value addition, and it is unclear how much of it will help the farmer vs the processor or trader. Fundamentally, India must discover a means to employ hundreds of millions of people in industries other than agriculture. Agriculture has been driven by a variety of factors, some of which are theoretically noble (keeping food affordable), and others that are less so (vote bank politics). Support has ranged from subsidized or even free inputs like power, water, and fertilizer to administered prices (both farmers and end-users through ration stores or other schemes).

At some point, political will instructs to call current support mechanisms into question in order to assess their equality, efficiency, and macroeconomic impact. Perhaps present policies are the incorrect medications for the problems — we blame execution failures as the issue, but it could be a diagnosis issue. The issue is not just leaking per se, as a former Prime Minister famously diagnosed, but something far worse: a fundamentally dysfunctional system. Agriculture’s future is a critical issue for planners and all other stakeholders. The government and other organizations are attempting to address the key challenges of agriculture in India, such as small farmer holdings, primary and secondary processing, supply chain, the infrastructure supporting efficient resource use, and marketing, with the goal of reducing market intermediaries.

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Work on cost-effective technologies that safeguard the environment and conserve our natural resources is required. Privatization, liberalization, and globalization changes had a faster impact on the inputs market. After 2003, agricultural marketing reforms changed the way agricultural outputs was sold by allowing private investment in developing markets, contract farming, and futures trading, among other things. These adjustments to marketing acts have resulted in some changes but at a lower rate. Along with this, India’s information technology revolution, new agricultural technologies, private investments, particularly in R&D, and government efforts to revitalize the cooperative movement to address the problems of smallholdings and small producers are all changing the face of agriculture in India.

Many agricultural firms started by highly educated young people demonstrate that they comprehend the enormous potential of investing money and effort in this industry. 

Over the next decade, the cumulative effects of technology will alter the face of agriculture. All of the limits in agriculture make productivity and returns complicated, but India’s agriculture sector still has many untapped potentials.

 Many individuals, big companies, start-ups, and entrepreneurial ventures are attracting a lot of investments in innovations, inventions, research and development, and other aspects of business due to favourable weather and soil conditions, high demand for food, untapped opportunities, and various fiscal incentives provided by the government for inputs, production infrastructure, availability of cheap credit facilities, and marketing and export promotion. All of the agriculture’s issues are being converted into opportunities, and this process is the future of agriculture.

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