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Onam Farmers' Markets to Open This Friday, Announces Agriculture Department

As many as 2,000 Onam markets are being held in association with Horticorp and VFPCK which will function from August 25 to 28.

Shivangi Rai
Onam Markets markets are scheduled to operate from August 25 to 28. (Image Courtesy- Unsplash)
Onam Markets markets are scheduled to operate from August 25 to 28. (Image Courtesy- Unsplash)

Agriculture Minister, P. Prasad, announced that Kerala's Agriculture Department’s Poshaka Samriddhi Mission will lead the state towards self-reliance in vegetable production.

This statement was made during the launch of farmers' markets for Onam, a festive initiative by the Agriculture Department. Prasad projected that Kerala would achieve this self-sufficiency in vegetable production by the year 2026.

The Poshaka Samriddhi Mission, initiated by the government last week, aims to augment vegetable and millet production within the state. This mission has set a target to facilitate vegetable cultivation in around 2.5 million households.

As part of this effort, the Kerala Agro Business Company (KABCO) has been established to support the marketing of agricultural goods.

Notably, over 200 agricultural products branded under 'Keralagro' have been made accessible on various e-commerce platforms. Prasad expressed optimism that KABCO would prove advantageous for farmers.

To promote market intervention during the festive season, the Agriculture Department is collaborating with the Kerala State Horticultural Products Development Corporation (Horticorp) and the Vegetable and Fruit Promotion Council, Keralam (VFPCK) to organize about 2,000 Onam markets. These markets are scheduled to operate from August 25 to 28.

Among these, 1,076 markets will be managed by respective Krishi Bhavans, while Horticorp and VFPCK will oversee 764 and 160 markets respectively.

A notable aspect of these markets is the procurement system. The locally cultivated vegetables will be purchased from farmers at rates 10% higher than the prevailing market prices. Customers, in turn, will have access to these products at a 30% discounted price.

Additionally, items certified with Good Agricultural Practices, procured at a 20% higher price from farmers, will be retailed at a 10% discount within these markets.

The event was presided over by P.P. Chitharanjan, MLA, and was attended by A.M. Ariff, MP, District Collector Haritha V. Kumar, and other dignitaries. This initiative, through the Poshaka Samriddhi Mission and the Onam markets, underscores Kerala's commitment to elevating local agricultural production and ensuring fair benefits to both farmers and consumers.

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