With an agenda to promote millets to an international audience, India on Thursday requested the United Nation’s Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) to declare the upcoming year as International Year of Millets, according to an official release.
“Wider global attention”
In a letter to FAO Director-General Jose Graziano da Silva, Agriculture Minister Radha Mohan Singh said, “To garner wider global attention and action, India has mooted a proposal to FAO for the declaration of the upcoming as International Year of Millets.” He also added that millets are not only nutritious but also resilient to climate change.
“Adoption of this proposal by FAO with the support of its member nations will enable it to be moved to the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) for declaration of the upcoming year as International Year of Millets,” the minister stated in his petition, and requested that this proposal be included in the 26th session of the Committee on Agriculture (COAG) meeting that has been scheduled to happen in Rome between October 1st and 5th.
India sets example
“It is highly desirable that global efforts are stepped up to bring these nutri-cereals back to the food basket of a wide range of consumers — rural and urban, as well as rich and poor — for boosting their production,” the minister said in his proposal, adding that the matter received the support of member countries when placed in the Bureau meeting of the Committee on Agriculture on the 5th of July.
“India is celebrating 2018 as the ‘National Year of Millets’ and is promoting cultivation by amending cropping pattern of areas which are especially susceptible to climate change,” he added in his proposal.