Regional and International

Chicago IL: The Consulate General of India, Chicago hosted a symposium on ‘Opportunities for Innovation in Indian Agriculture Sector’ on October 4, 2011 at Chicago. The University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign, Michigan State University and The Chicago Council on Global Affairs were partners in the event.

The conference brought together over 100 regional and international agriculture experts from the government, academia and the corporate world to share information and experiences in Indian Agriculture and articulate the challenges & opportunities for innovation in the Indian Agriculture Sector. A fifteen member business delegation from FICCI also participated in the Symposium. Mr Sam Pitroda, Advisor to the Hon’ble Prime Minister of India on Public Information Infrastructure & Innovations and Dr Robert Easter, interim Vice President, University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign were opening keynote speakers and Dr Marshall Bouton, President of The Chicago Council on Global Affairs presented the luncheon keynote address.

Mr P.K Basu, Secretary, Ministry of Agriculture, Govt of India made a presentation on policy initiatives conducive to the development of this sector. He stressed that market led extension, development of efficient supply and value chains, building agriculture infrastructure, climate resilience are some of the priority areas for the ministry today.

The symposium presented four engaging panel discussion focusing on various areas for Innovation in Agriculture Sector like production practices, the water challenge, post harvest loss and integrated food system in India today. The luncheon Panel discussed in depth the investment opportunities in Indian Agriculture.

All the panel discussions stressed the importance of knowledge transfer – not just from a top down perspective but from a peer to peer perspective. It is crucial that the knowledge and learning flow not only from the Lab to Land, but also from Land to Land. Technology when embedded through the process will help to provide better information, cheaper tools, and the ability to reengineer the value chain. The panel discussions successfully highlighted the growing need for drought or pest resistant seeds, small farm mechanization, modular warehousing and better weather forecasting technology thus presenting a huge opportunity for the US firms to explore the Indian Agriculture Sector

Photographs by: Asian Media USA
Press release by: CG office

Suresh Bodiwala
Asian Media USA
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