Noting that the sector is performing well, the survey adds, it needs “re- orientation” due to factors like climate change, low levels of productivity and increase in input costs
Indian government is undertaking a slew of measures to spur growth in the agriculture sector. These include setting up farmer-producer organisations, improving returns to farmers, promotion of crop diversification and improving infrastructure through the Agricultural Infrastructure Fund (AIF), according to Economic Survey 2022-23
Noting that the sector is performing well, the survey adds, it needs “re- orientation” due to factors like climate change, low levels of productivity, increase in input costs, lack of quality mechanisation, nature of landholdings, etc.
The surveys talks about climate smart farming practices, which are gradually being accepted by farmers. The farmers are using clean energy resource like solar energy for the purpose of irrigation. The farmers are also provided incentives to “transfer electricity generated through solar to the local grid”.
The survey further notes that crop yield prediction models using artificial intelligence and drones for monitoring soil and crop health have been initiated. Smart farming also enables crop diversification, which will help farmers reduce their dependence on monsoons for water.
Saying that there are over 1,000 agritech start-ups in India, the survey adds that India has more than 500 start-ups working for the millet value chains. The Indian Institute of Millets Research has incubated 250 start-ups under Rashtriya Krishi Vikas Yojana – Remunerative Approaches for Agriculture and Allied Sectors Rejuvenation (RKVY- RAFTAAR).
The survey states that the allied sectors of Indian agriculture – livestock, forestry & logging and fishing & aquaculture – are gradually becoming sectors of buoyant growth and a potential source of better farm incomes.
As per Fourth Advance Estimates for 2021-22, the survey adds, the production of food grains and oil seeds has been increasing Year-on-Year (YoY). Production of pulses has also been notably higher than the average of 23.8 million tonnes in the last five years. However, as indicated earlier, changing climate has been impacting agriculture adversely. The year 2022 witnessed an early heat wave during the wheat-harvesting season, adversely affecting its production.