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Agriculture Ministry inks MoU with 5 firms

Context:

Recently, the Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare signed 5 Memorandums of Understanding (MOUs) with private companies for taking forward Digital Agriculture.

These pilot projects are part of the Digital Agriculture Mission and will draw on the National Farmers Database which already includes 5.5 crore farmers identified using existing national schemes.

Relevance:

GS-III: Indian Economy (Growth and Development of Indian Economy, Monetary Policy, Inflation)

Dimensions of the Article:

  1. Digital Agriculture
  2. Digital Agriculture mission
  3. Highlights of the recent MOUs signed by the Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare

Digital Agriculture

Digital Agriculture is “ICT (Information and Communication Technologies) and data ecosystems to support the development and delivery of timely, targeted information and services to make farming profitable and sustainable while delivering safe nutritious and affordable food for all.”

Examples of Digital Agriculture

  • Agricultural biotechnology is a range of tools, including traditional breeding techniques, that alter living organisms, or parts of organisms, to make or modify products; improve plants or animals; or develop microorganisms for specific agricultural uses.
  • Precision agriculture (PA) is an approach where inputs are utilised in precise amounts to get increased average yields, compared to traditional cultivation techniques such as agroforestry, intercropping, crop rotation, etc. It is based on using ICTs.
  • Digital and wireless technologies for data measurement, Weather monitoring, Robotics/drone technology, etc.

Digital Agriculture mission

  • The Digital Agriculture mission was launched by the Ministry of Agriculture & Farmers Welfare for a period of five years (2021 -2025).
  • The mission aims to achieve rapid development in the Indian Agriculture Sector through the use of the latest technologies. These include technologies such as artificial intelligence, blockchain technology, remote sensing and Geographic information systems technology (GIS), usage of drones and robotics.
  • The focus is on projects based on new technologies such as artificial intelligence, blockchain, use of drones, remote sensing and GIS technology and robots etc.

Highlights of the recent MOUs signed by the Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare

  • As per Agriculture Ministry, Jio Platforms Limited will conduct its pilot project in order to provide advisories for farmers in Jalna & Nasik districts of Maharashtra.
  • ITC Limited has signed MoU in a bid to build a “Customized ‘Site Specific Crop Advisory’ service.”
  • MoU with the ITC limited will help in implementing the proposal in identified villages of Sehore and Vidisha districts of Madhya Pradesh. It will support Wheat crop operations.
  • MoU with Cisco will “conceptualize the Proof of Concept in effective knowledge sharing between farmers, administration, academia and industry” in Kaithal district of Haryana and Morena district of Madhya Pradesh.
  • MoU with NCDEX e Markets Limited (NeML) will look after four services–Market Linkages, Financial Linkages, Aggregation of demand, and Data Sanitization in three districts namely, Guntur (Andhra Pradesh), Nasik (Maharashtra) and Devanagere (Karnataka).
  • Ninjacart will help in the development and hosting the Agri Marketplace Platform (AMP). It will bring all the participants in post-harvest market linkage together. As per MoU, Proof of Concept (POC) will be conducted in Anand (Gujarat), Chhindwara (Madhya Pradesh) and Indore (Madhya Pradesh).

-Source: PIB, Indian Express

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September 2022
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