New Delhi: The area under organic farming is
growing steadily and is likely to touch 20 lakh hectares by
2012, an agriculture promoting body today said.
The area under organic farming witnessed nearly 39 per
cent growth during 2008-09 to 12 lakh hectares compared to
8.65 lakh hectares in the year-ago period, International
Competence Centre for Organic Agriculture (ICCOA) President
Mukesh Gupta told reporters here.
"We are targeting the acreage under organic farming to go
up to 20 lakh hectares by 2012," he said.
Besides, ICCOA is also aiming the organic food exports to
grow to Rs 4,500 crore, taking the country`s total global
share to 2.5 per cent from the current 0.2 per cent, Gupta
Gupta said around Rs 60,000 crore worth food goes to
waste every year at a time when the country is reeling under
drought and escalating price rise.
Organic farming can help reduce the amount of wastage as
the shelf life of the produce are higher, he added.
The country exports about Rs 450 crore worth organic
food, he said, adding that 9.5 lakh farmers in the country
have registered as organic farmers.
Gupta pointed out that organic farming, using improved
variety of seeds is the best option to fight drought like
situation. "Organic farming improves soil health and ensures
food safety," he said.