Assam MP advocates formulation of policies to attract NE youths to make agriculture as ‘career’ objective

Assam MP advocates formulation of policies to attract NE youths to make agriculture as ‘career’ objective

GUWAHATI, Feb 16: With unemployment posing as the biggest problem for the youths of Assam and the entire North-eastern region, Assam Lok Sabha MP Kamakhya Prasad Tasa advocated the formulation of policies to attract youth toward agriculture and to make agriculture as 'career' objective.

"Unemployment is very high in Assam and agriculture and food processing can play a vital role in development of state. So it is very important for the government, industries and scientist to formulate polices to attract youth of Assam toward agriculture and make agriculture as carrier objective," Tasa said.

The Lok Sabha MP was addressing a one day Conference on "Linking Prospective Food Entrepreneurs With Government Schemes & Markets" organised by the Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industries of India (ASSOCHAM) in collaboration with Ministry of Food & Processing Industries (MoFPI), Government of India and Assam Agriculture University-Jorhat here on Thursday.

Tasa was also of the view that such programmes will help address the issue of linking farmer with market. "The potential for Agro-based food processing industries in the state of Assam is very high. Besides the major food crops, of rice and maize, the state is also renowned for its horticultural crops like pineapple, orange, etc," he said adding that the state has achieved signal success in the cultivation of non-traditional crops like tea, cashew nut, oilseeds, etc.

Further, he called upon the people of the state to make better and efficient utilization of natural resources.

While stating that is lot of scope of food processing in Assam, Tasa said that the sector is however suffering due to lack of infrastructure state is suffering. "There is a need for the Government of India to set up infrastructure in state for developing the food processing in the state," he maintained.

This conference is being held with an aim to provide a platform to aspire food entrepreneurs, existing SMEs in food, agriculture professionals & students, progressive farmers, Self Help Groups, etc. for sharing their views and learn about latest initiatives and opportunities available in the field of Agro Food Industries and inform them about the different scheme of Government.

In his address, Dr. Om S Tyagi, Senior Director, ASSOCHAM opined that the food processing industry has made some significant progress in North Eastern region of India. Areas like – Agro & Horticulture Processing, Processing of Plantation Crops, Animal Husbandry and Meat Processing Industries have been declared as potential area in the promotion of industrial activities in the state of Assam. Special emphasis is presently laid on the non-traditional crops, such as oilseeds, ginger, turmeric groundnut, tea, coffee, medicinal plants and other crops

Meanwhile, Dr. Kamal Malla Bujarbaruah, Vice Chancellor, Assam Agricultural University in his address said that present government is optimizing farming system for doubling farmers' income.

"Assam Agriculture University through its different programs encourages entrepreneurship among farmers of the state," he said adding that there are different schemes of the Central and state government for development of agriculture in the state.

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