Tamil Nadu

Farmer Producer Organisations set for a major fillip in State

Representational image.

Representational image.

The State government is planning to promote Farmer Producer Organisations (FPOs) in a big way.

As a measure of its commitment towards FPOs, the government has decided to offer a host of concessions and incentives to them. It will also act as a facilitator, according to the State government’s policy document on FPOs, which was released by Chief Minister Edappadi K. Palaniswami in Salem on Sunday. Last year, Deputy Chief Minister O. Panneerselvam, who holds the Finance portfolio, announced during his Budget speech that the government will come out with a policy document.

 

Among the sops being offered to FPOs are portions of unutilised land in State Horticulture Farms for vegetable seed production. Organic farming will be promoted through FPOs, and they will be able to avail themselves of incentives for organic conversion, inputs and on-farm infrastructure. Installation of solar pumpsets on the common land of the bodies will be prioritised.

Explaining the importance of the policy document, a senior official in the Department of Agricultural Marketing and Agri Business said it had spelt out the intention of the State government to support farmers by promoting and assisting FPOs. Till now, support from the State government had come only through the schemes of the Union government, the Small Farmers’ Agribusiness Consortium and the National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD), the official noted.

As only a few FPOs are able to make use of institutional financing through non-banking financial companies, the document spells out how the organisations can get assured, adequate and affordable financing through various measures, such as the credit guarantee scheme, the interest subvention scheme and mezzanine financing.

An exhaustive account of various concessions available to FPOs has been given in the document. “There had been a lot of ambiguity in this regard, which made farmers run from pillar to post,” the official said.

More importantly, the document is a “rallying point” for farmers and FPOs to know what is due to them. “So far, there has been no official statement regarding the locus standi of FPOs in the government policy space,” the official noted.


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Printable version | Aug 9, 2022 1:58:28 am | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/tamil-nadu/farmer-producer-organisations-set-for-a-major-fillip-in-state/article30795822.ece