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First Agritech Cohort launched under SSIP

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Recently the first Agritech cohort has been launched under the South-South Innovation Platform (SSIP).

The Agritech cohort has been jointly launched under SSIP by Atal Innovation Mission (AIM), NITI Aayog and United Nations Capital Development Fund (UNCDP). It aims to help smallholder farmers in Asia and Africa deal with the challenges that have arisen as a result of the Corona pandemic.

SSIP was launched in July 2021 by AIM and NITI Aayog in partnership with UNCDF. It aims to enable cross-border exchange of innovations, insights and investments among emerging markets in India, Indonesia, Malawi, Malaysia, Kenya, Uganda and Zambia.

Agritech is defined as technological innovations. These innovations either reduce waste, cost and time or improve productivity or boost profitability by promoting efficiency and production.

The World Government Summit Report explains three general agritech trends:

  • Variety of products manufactured using new technologies (eg GM crops).
  • Using innovative technologies to bring food production closer to consumers.
  • Incorporating cross-industry technologies and applications.

There is a need to focus on agri-technology because more than 50 percent of the population in India is dependent on agriculture. This sector contributes about 15-18 percent to the GDP.

With the increasing population, increased average income and the effect of globalization in India, the demand for quantity, quality and nutritious food and different types of food will increase.

Initiatives Launched in India

  • Government’s app named ‘Kisan Suvidha’ provides free information to farmers about current weather, market price, dealer information, safety of crops etc.
  • The government had launched the ‘Innovation and Agri-Entrepreneurship Development Program’ under the Rashtriya Krishi Vikas Yojana (PKVY-RAFTAAR) in the year 2018-19. It aims to promote innovation and agri-entrepreneurship by providing financial support to the incubation system.
  • Bhuvan, a geo-platform of the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO), which provides valuable data on tree planting, pest monitoring and weather.

Source – The Hindu

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