The first-of-its-kind World Orange Festival 2017, a three-day festival which was inaugurated by Devendra Fadnavis, chief minister, Maharashtra, and Nitin Gadkari, minister of road transport and highways, government of India, concluded in Nagpur recently.
Other dignitaries present at the inauguration of the festival, supported by the government of Maharashtra and hosted by Maharashtra Tourism Development Corporation (MTDC) included Gajendra Singh Shekhawat, minister of state for agriculture and family welfare; Jaykumar Rawal, tourism minister, government of Maharashtra; Madan Yerawar, minister of state for energy, tourism, food and drug administration and general administration, government of Maharashtra, and Chandrashekhar Bawankule, minister for energy, new and renewable energy, government of Maharashtra.
Government and private entities, such as the Orange Growers’ Association of India, the department of agriculture, UPL, Bajaj Electricals, Coca-Cola, Indian Oil, Camlin and Integriti, came forward towards the larger cause of the festival.
The festival is designed to give an impetus to the local farming community and boost the identity of Nagpur as the Orange City on the world map.
The event featured panel discussions, trip to orange orchards and exhibitions. An intensive panel discussion on the problems and prospects of orange cultivation was held at the business-to-business (B2B) summit seminar.
Pandurang Fundkar, minister of agriculture, government of Maharashtra, and Atul Sharma, executive president and country head, consumer products, Bajaj Electricals Ltd, were present.
Gadkari said, Nagpur is known as the leading producer of oranges. To multiply the production and quality of the fruit, farmers need to use advanced technologies for farming.
Events like the World Orange Festival are a platform to share new technology and research with farmers to help increase the growth and sale of oranges at a global level, he added.
We are planning to set up shops at railway stations and international airports to promote and market oranges on a wider platform, the minister stated.
Fadnavis congratulated Lokmat for initiating the festival to promote Nagpur at an international platform. It is expected to be an annual event.
Speaking on the occasion, he expressed his views to support the Nagpur Orange Growers’ Association (NOGA) through the public-private partnership (PPP) model, where the government’s share would be 49 per cent and that of the private sector would be 51 per cent.
In the coming years, the World Orange Festival will bring together researchers from the world with new-age technology for farmers in Nagpur to produce better quality oranges.
The demand for oranges will increase with the help of exports and transportation facilities.
To boost the transportation of oranges, pre-cooling and cold storage facilities will be provided on the upcoming Nagpur-Mumbai Super Expressway.
A never-seen-before exhibition on the Citrus Fruit Show was also inaugurated. Moreover, orange farmers from across 10 other states of India participated in the festival, which was attended by orange cultivators and technology experts from Israel, Turkey and South Africa.
Source: FNB News