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Find ways to make sustainable and inclusive food: PM Modi

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18 June 2023, New Delhi: The G20 Agriculture Ministers’ Meeting during 15-17 June 2023 adopted the agreed outcome document titled “Outcome Document and Chair’s Summary”. This historic agreement was reached following discussions on several topics based on the agriculture sector, where it was envisioned that developing G-20 nations would assume leadership.

The Ministerial meeting started on 16 June 2023, with a plenary session with the welcome address by Manoj Ahuja, Union Agriculture Secretary. This was followed by a video message by Prime Minister Narendra Modi who graciously welcomed the excellencies and distinguished delegates. Prime Minister Narendra Modi highlighting that the agriculture sector lay at the heart of human civilization, called upon the G-20 Agriculture Ministers to work collectively to further the future of humanity by addressing the challenges faced by this sector.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi emphasized the four priority areas for discussion during the G20 Agriculture Ministers’ Meeting: (a) Promotion of agricultural diversity and improvement of social security systems to enhance food security and nutrition (b) Financing climate-friendly technologies and adopting climate-smart approach based on agricultural system models for sustainable agricultural production (c) Strengthen infrastructure for small and marginal farmers, women and youth and make use of growing economic opportunities to promote inclusive agriculture value chains and food systems to enhance the resilience and efficiency of the chains (d) Leverage digital technologies to improve digitization for the transformation of agriculture and focusing on standardization of agricultural data platform which is a part of digital public goods.

In light of the present global supply chain disruptions due to the pandemic and worsened by the impact of geopolitical tensions and climate change, Prime Minister Narendra Modi urged the G20 member nations to explore ways to adopt agricultural practices for better soil health, crop health, and yield and empower our farmers with innovation and digital technology.

Union Agriculture and Farmers Welfare Minister Narendra Singh Tomar welcomed the ministers and Heads of Delegations (HoDs) to the plenary session. Dr Ramesh Chand, Member, NITI Aayog made a presentation on “Global Food Security and Nutrition” highlighting the present-day challenges and possible solutions. Union Ministers of State for Agriculture Kailash Choudhary and Ms. Shobha Karandlaje, Director General of ICAR and Secretary of DARE Dr. Himanshu Pathak, Secretary – Department of Fisheries Mr. J.N. Swain along with other senior officials and high-level officials of G-20 countries and heads of invited organizations were also present.

Agriculture Minister lauded the G20 Members for their notable contributions towards making the Agriculture Working Group proceedings successful and historic which resulted in the welcoming of two key outcomes in the “Outcome Document and Chair’s Summary” during the Ministerial meeting: (a) Deccan High-Level Principles and (b) International Millets and Other Ancient Grains Research Initiative.

The Deccan High-Level Principles demonstrated the G20’s collective responsibility in reinforcing and complementing efforts across geographies in response to global food security crises by means of facilitating humanitarian assistance to countries and populations in vulnerable situations; enhancing availability and access to nutritious food and strengthening food safety nets; strengthening policies and collaborative actions for climate resilient and sustainable agriculture and food systems; strengthening resilience and inclusivity in agriculture and food value chains; promoting the one health approach; accelerating innovation and the use of digital technology and scaling up responsible public and private investments in agriculture.

Also Read: ICAR signs an MOU with Amazon Kisan to guide farmers on the scientific cultivation of crops

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