Exports of organic products from India have risen over 20 per cent in the fiscal just ended owing to the growing global appetite for healthy food that is free from chemicals and pesticides residues. This is also a leg-up for the government's plans to expand the area under eco-friendly and sustainable farming, stakeholders say. As per the Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority (APEDA), India exported organic products worth Rs 30 billion (over $440 million) in 2017-18, from Rs 24.77 billion in 2016-17.
The major demand under organic product category is for flax seeds, sesame and soybean; for pulses such as arhar (red gram), chana (pigeon pea); and rice besides tea and medicinal plants, said APEDA Chairman D.K Singh.
People around the globe are getting more conscious of what they are eating. They are switching to organic products as they do not want chemicals in their food. Compared to the overall agriculture export, the share of organic products is less. But the rate of growth is quite impressive, Singh told IANS. In 2016-17, India exported 21.27 million tonnes of (regular) agricultural products worth Rs 1,084 billion, including substantial amounts of rice, animal products and fresh vegetables and fruits. In the same year, 309,766 tonnes of organic products worth Rs 24.77 billion were exported.