New Delhi: More than 150 students from Class IV to Class XII participated and learnt the basics elements of paddy cultivation at the training farm of APEDA promoted Basmati Export Development Foundation (BEDF) which is situated at Modipuram in Meerut district of Uttar Pradesh. Students visited the training farm on three different days and learnt the basics of paddy cultivation such as puddling, transplanting, processing, production and export process. The students also learnt the activities like the process of making rice from paddy, de-husking, making steamed rice, production of rice meant for export and extraction of oil from rice and fodder for animals.
Besides, BEDF scientists explained to them the process of Basmati production, processing, storage, the volume of business and export activities. They also learnt about soil health cards management, including green manure crops and experienced the nodules in leguminous crops, including Moong bean and Sesbania and transplanted Basmati crops in the field.
Shri M Angamuthu, Chairman, APEDA said that the objective of this initiative is to impart practical knowledge to students as well as enhance their understanding of the entire value-chain of rice production to exports, was to support the government’s attempt. He informed that similar field visits of students will be organized in other parts of the country for imparting practical knowledge on agricultural production systems.
In line with the objective of the NEP, the Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority (APEDA), organised farming demonstrations and farm training to hone the skills and inculcate practical knowledge of paddy cultivation among students, start-ups and others.
As per the National Education Policy (NEP), institutions have been asked to give special impetus to practical knowledge and skill development instead of theoretical learning. In a tweet, the Hon’ble Prime Minister Narendra Modi stated that NEP aims to bring education out of narrow limits, and integrate it with 21st-century modern ideas.
APEDA through BEDF is assisting state governments in the promotion of Basmati rice cultivation. Through the awareness creation programme, farmers were informed that Basmati rice cultivation is an Indian tradition and it is a collective responsibility to maintain this tradition as there is a huge demand for Basmati rice in the global market. The farmers have been requested to get themselves registered on basmati.net through the State Agriculture Department. APEDA, through BEDF, has been assisting the state governments in the promotion of Basmati rice cultivation.
As part of the initiatives, BEDF in collaboration with the rice exporters associations of Punjab, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Himachal Pradesh, Jammu & Kashmir and Delhi, state agriculture universities and state agriculture departments, has organised 75 awareness and training programmes to encourage farmers for growing high-quality Basmati rice in the seven states. BEDF is also involved as a technical partner for different FPOs, exporter associations, etc in the key growing states.
India has exported Basmati to the tune of close to USD 12 billion in the last three years. In 2021-22, India exported Basmati rice valued at USD 3.54 billion. Saudi Arabia, Iran, Iraq, Yemen, United Arab Emirates, United States of America, Kuwait, United Kingdom, Qatar and Oman have a share of close to 80 per cent in total shipments of aromatic long-grained rice from India in 2021-22.