State-Level Workshop on Millets on the Onset of the International Year of Millets

25th January 2023, Lamphelpat

One-Day State Level Workshop on Millets was organized by ICAR Research Complex for NEH Region Manipur Centre, Lamphelpat on the theme” Millets on the onset of International Year of Millets” to create awareness and the promotion of Millets in Manipur here today.

Shri. P. Vaiphei, IAS Additional Chief Secretary, Government of Manipur highlighted the scopes of millets in the Northeastern region and mentioned Indian government is making millet products compulsory to serve as refreshments in the functions. He urged the agri-entrepreneur of the state to take the advantage of the growing demand for millets.  He said that millets would be on the menu in the upcoming G20s meeting in Manipur.

State-Level Workshop on Millets on the Onset of the International Year of Millets   State-Level Workshop on Millets on the Onset of the International Year of Millets

Shri RK Dinesh, IAS, Commissioner Agriculture, Government of Manipur highlighted the importance and status of millet production in India. He also stressed the possibility of replacing illegal poppy cultivation with millet crops in consultation with various stakeholders and urged to initiate millet cultivation and production with the idea of branding Manipur Millets.

In his address, Dr S. B. Singh, Director of Instruction, CAU, Imphal, said that millets will play a crucial role in the context of climate-resilient agriculture. He also said millets can be a crop of the elite peoples from the concept of poor man’s crop. In view of the erratic rainfall patterns during the last 5 years, rice cultivation has been hampering the production deficit by 40% this gap could be mitigated by millets cultivation.

Smt. N. Guite, General Manager, NABARD Manipur Region suggested value chain management of millets products such as ladoos, cookies, flake, flour, and biscuits and urged to incorporate in the Mid Days Meal/Anganwadi/SHGs at the districts, blocks and village levels.

Shri N. Gojendro Singh, Director, Department of Agriculture stated that the Agriculture department also gearing up for creating awareness, training and production of millets in the state of Manipur within 2023. He added that millet may be your medicine rather known as smart food for smart people.

Dr. I. Meghachandra Singh, Joint Director, ICAR-NEH Manipur Centre briefed on the history of millets from domestication to commercialization which is grasses already grown in the region and popularizing millets by organizing awareness, training, demonstration, and seed production at the institute and farmers’ levels in association with the KVKs and seed growers by ICAR Manipur Centre. He opined that though millets productivity is low in the state of Manipur but it can be bridged the deficit in cereal production due to the impact of global warming. The issue of poor yield and low value must be addressed with uniqueness like organic and with value addition, marketing, and processing through FPOs, SHGs and FCs, he added. He said the millets can successfully be grown as wonder crops in draught-prone districts like Imphal east, foothills, wastelands, and jhum areas.

Around 170 delegates including five exhibitors displaying different value-added products of millets, representative from NABARD, FPOs, KVKs, Line departments, food-preneurs etc. from different districts of Manipur.

(Source: ICAR Research Complex for North Eastern Hill Region, Manipur Centre, Imphal, Manipur)