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‘We Will Stop Buying Produce from FPOs if MOFPI Operation Greens’ Portal Remains Dead’

Operation Greens, an initiative of the Ministry of Food Processing Industries, MOFPI, stopped functioning as the website has been down for over nine months. There has been no prior notice or timeline given to the farmers, FPOs, or exporters, except for a message, “sampada-mofpi.gov.in says, the application submission for this scheme is now closed at 31 March 2023 pm for site updation......” flashing on the website.

Aysha Anam

Operation Greens was announced in the Union Budget 2018-19 on the line of “Operation Flood, with an outlay of Rs.500 crore to promote Farmer Producers Organizations (FPOs), agri-logistics, processing facilities, and professional management,” said the MOFPI website.

Although the scheme initially covered TOP crops, including Tomato, Onion, and Potato, later 22 perishable crops were included in the Union Budget 2021-22.

Why Is Operation Greens Important for Farmers?

Operation Greens provides a 50% subsidy on transportation and storage facilities. This helps exporters and FPOs in storing the produce and gradually sending it to the market while earning effective margin rates.

Rucha Bhujbal from Pune lodged a complaint seeking an answer from MOFPI, to which Dr. G.Snnivasan, Deputy Agricultural Marketing Advisor, replied in the Right to Information (RTI) report, “Due to Non-availability of funds under OG —Short Term Interventions, the Sampada portal is closed from 1.4.23 for acceptance proposals on line. Further development in this regard will be announced in the website /portal.”

Dr Amol Kolhe, Member of Parliament, wrote a letter to MOFPI, saying, “Since there is no nodal officer from the state of Maharashtra, the beneficiaries do not get assistance in case of difficulties. Therefore, funds for this scheme should be sanctioned and the portal should be restarted immediately, nodal officer should be appointed from Maharashtra state government, trigger prize which is currently only for tomato, onion, and potato crop should be given to all fruits and vegetables also, technical committee meeting should be held at least once in a month, claim settlement should be done in one month are the demands made by farmers and exporters.”

How’s the Business Getting Affected?

“This year from Jan 23 to June 23 we had export shipments of over 8700mt European Union, the UK, and Malaysia. Lucre International is one of the entities that claimed this subsidy after COVID-19. This year, we followed the scheme guidelines and procured onions at minimum support prices via FPO/FPC, assuming that we will get a 50% transport cost refund from MOFPI's Operation Greens TOP scheme. But, on the date March 31, 23 ministry closed Sampda portal without any intimation before and after. To date, there has been no development,” said Reg, Gautam Gajra- Partner- Lucre International, Navi-Mumbai

How Will Farmers Be Affected?

“We give at least 20P extra to Farmer Producer Organisations (FPOs), and sometimes we compromise on the quality also. We try to make things easier for farmers, however, with portals getting shut suddenly, we may have to stop buying crops from FPOs,” Mr Gajra said.

He further added, “We are going to buy TOP crops from APMC, as the auctioning is easier their and rates are also economical.”

Amol Mahajan, Director of Sunria Agro Produce OPC Pvt Ltd, one of the leading banana export company in Jalgaon-Maharashtra, said, “We applied for this scheme in F.Y. 2022-23 and all our claims were rejected by MOFPI due to some flaws in guideline. Although we re-submitted our presentation in April 2023, there has been no response from MOFPI. We are losing trust in MOFPI.”

Sunria Farms have a wide procurement network of farmers in Solapur, Jalgaon Nandurbar, Nanded, Anantpura, and Burhanpur districts. They export more than 150 containers yearly.

What do Farmers Want?

Sanket Hoge, an Agriculture Export consultant/Professional, outlined “our comprehensive demands encompass opening the Sampada portal for claim submissions, furnishing trigger prices for FY 23-24 and subsequent fiscal years, extending trigger prices to cover all eligible commodities within eligible clusters, and ensuring claim settlements within one month of document submission.”


Key persons responsible for running operation greens have been asked about the concern but haven’t reverted yet, including, Shri Sanoj Kumar Jha, Additional Secretary, PMKSY (Mega Food Parks, Cold Chain, Operation Greens, Backward and Forward Linkages, Agro-Processing Clusters, CEFPPC, FTL, HACCP and R&D), Shri D. Praveen, Director, Operation Greens, Cold Chain, P.M.F.M.E.(Full additional charge), Dr. G. Srinivasan, Deputy Agricultural Marketing, Advisor, Operation Greens, and Shri Sanjay Gupta, Senior Inspecting Officer, Operation Greens.

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