Millet, organic produce at KMF, Hopcoms soon

Millet, organic produce at KMF, Hopcoms soon

The preparation for the Organics and Millets International Trade Fair 2019 is underway at the Palace Grounds on Thursday. DH Photo/Janardhan B K

Come April, and one would see a spread of organic produce at Hopcoms, KMF (Karnataka Milk Federation) outlets and probably, at the Indira canteens, starting with the superfood, millet.

Advocating and promoting a healthy lifestyle, and to set a precedence, millet meal supplies have already started in government departments and meetings.

This was revealed by the minister for agriculture, N H Shivashankara Reddy, who also said that talks are on with the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) on introducing millet and other organic foods, once a week, at the Indira Canteens as well.

Reddy was addressing the media about the inauguration of the Organics and Millets International Trade Fair 2019, which is to be underway from January 18-20, at the Palace Grounds.

The organic produce including millet varieties will be sold under the brand name, ‘Siri’, and will have a uniform packaging format for people to identify the brand easily.

According to the agriculture minister, the costs and other modalities were being worked out with Hopcoms, KMF and the BBMP. A series of meetings have also been held with the concerned officials to finalise the modalities.

In 2-3 months, some outlets will have organic produce in Bengaluru as part of phase I.

Talks are on at the government level to supply 5 kg rice and 2 kg millet through the Public Distribution System (PDS), the minister said.

Since large scale supplies are required for the PDS, the government will first begin with Ragi and Jola, and will gradually extend to other millet varieties.

The government, meanwhile, has agreed to serve millet for mid-day meals to school children. It has also been decided the children will be served food made with organic produce only. Addressing the costs of organic produce and millet, Reddy said that in the coming budget, the government will fix a minimum price. The government has set up 15 Farmers Producers Federations, under which farmers are being promoted to sell their produce directly to consumers to avoid middlemen. 

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