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Plant based foods are an important option to meet future needs: Tomar
Friday, 17 March, 2023, 15 : 00 PM [IST]
Our Bureau, New Delhi
In order to deliberate on plant-based foods as an option for food security in the future, a conference was organised on the topic "Dawn of a Plant-Based Age" during the ‘Aahaar’ exhibition organised at Pragati Maidan, New Delhi. Inaugurating the conference organised by the Plant Based Foods Industriy Association (PBFIA), the chief guest, Union Minister of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare Narendra Singh Tomar said that plant-based foods, along with meeting the needs of the times, will create job opportunities and boost agriculture. It will also give strength to the agriculture sector. In view of the challenges that agriculture is facing, a plant-based alternative diet is an important step.

Tomar said that if we prepare the options that will be needed in the future, then we can avert any crisis in the coming times. We are well aware of the present and future challenges, food security being one of them. In the coming decades, India will complete the centenary of Independence, by that time the population will also increase, whereas due to the works like infrastructural development, laying of new railway lines in large numbers, construction of world class national highways for modern and developed India, we have to be prepared for the possible reduction in the area under cultivation. The Government of India, under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, along with the State Governments, is rapidly engaged in fulfilling the ambitious target of making India a developed nation by the year 2047. There is a need to think from now on how much food we will need till the year 2050 and how much global demand will increase from us. In this direction, the Central Government is making all efforts at its level and Modi has taken steps in a planned manner towards realising the vision of overall and balanced development. People's interest in agriculture should increase continuously, this is also our responsibility, that is why Modi always insists that private investment should come in agriculture sector, new techniques should come, work should get simpler and farmers reap more profit, thus the next generation will be attracted towards agriculture. It has to be understood that the farmer is the basis of farming. The first priority should be to give benefits and prestige to the farmers, so that they can stay in farming, feed the country and also fulfil the expectations of the world. Continuous efforts are being made in this direction through various schemes by the government.

Tomar said that along with food security, it is the need of the hour to prepare alternatives from the point of view of nutrition. On the initiative of Modi, the United Nations has declared the year 2023 as the International Year of Millets. Shree Anna's production-productivity increases, processing, packaging, exports also increase, millet based dishes regain pride of place in our food plates, that's why the Year of Millets is being celebrated. As a result, the nutritious diets will increase, farmers will benefit and job opportunities will also increase. PBFIA office bearer Sanjay Sethi, APEDA's Secretary Dr. Sudhanshu & ITPO's Rajat Agarwal were also present in the programme.
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