Nagpur (Maharashtra) [India], October 11 (ANI): Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority (APEDA) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with ICAR-Central Citrus Research Institute (ICAR-CCRI), Nagpur to boost exports of citrus and its value-added products, informed the Ministry of Commerce and Industry on Monday.
According to a statement issued by the Ministry today, the MoU which was signed in the presence of Nitin Gadkari, Minister of Road Transport and Highways of India and Dr M. Angamuthu, Chairman, APEDA, aims at promotion and handholding of Farmers Producer Organizations and Farmer Producer Companies and linking them with international markets. It further aims at promoting products specific clusters, expanding export baskets and destinations through global market linkage.
The MoU also aims at pursuing collaborative activities that enhance technology transfer and technical expertise of the university and strengthening existing laboratory facilities for testing as per the requirement of importing countries and for obtaining NABL accreditation and APEDA recognition.
"The MoU envisages promoting export by focussing on the creation of product-specific clusters along with the development of technologies by APEDA and ICAR-CCRI with a focus on efficient and precision farming," said the release.
The collaboration with two institutes of repute would focus on diversifying the export basket, destinations and boosting high-value agricultural products exports through establishing Brand India globally. Market development and traceability in citrus include strengthening forward and backward linkages, branding and marketing, the establishment of market intelligence cell, the MoU stated.
The MoU stated that the product development work comprises field digitization, efficient quality control measures (Sanitary and Phytosanitary), development of organic farms.
APEDA and ICAR-CCRI would also organize capacity building for farmers, entrepreneurs, exporters and other stakeholders to promote agri-businesses and exports.
According to the MoU, APEDA and ICAR-CCRI would collaborate on developing climate-resilient agriculture, promoting GAP certification, blockchain technologies and shaping business models around the needs of the farmers. The Development of export protocols for citrus especially the sea transport for long-distance markets would be undertaken.
"There would be need assessment, technology development and dissemination for citrus for export promotion by APEDA which would also develop detection techniques in advance to boost agri-exports. Both the institutions would undertake collaborative projects for the development for value-added products of Oranges and other citrus fruits and carry out training and research consultancy," according to MoU.
APEDA and ICAR-CCRI would also develop a Standard Operating Procedure for citrus fruits for exports which would include pre and post-harvest management, Residue control, post-harvest interval, Shelf life development etc., said the release.
The export-oriented extension activities at the farm level are to be carried out in association with the active FPOs or NGOs in the respective states and districts.
The MoU also aims at developing an end-to-end sustainable value chain with APEDA to promote better consignment commitment to importing countries along with the export promotion of Geographical Indication (GI) tagged Nagpur Orange) and organic citrus products from Maharashtra. ICAR-CCRI would contribute to addressing the challenges in export like the development of real-time solutions for pests and diseases.
According to the release, APEDA signed a series of MoUs with ICAR-Indian Institute of Millet Research (ICAR-IIMR), Tamil Nadu Agricultural University, Coimbatore, University of Agricultural Sciences, Bangalore. National Agricultural Cooperative Marketing Federation of India Ltd (NAFED) for boosting value-addition and farmers' income. (ANI)