The government’s agri-export promotion body Agriculture and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority (APEDA) is planning to take an Indian delegation of exporters, start-ups and farmer-producer organisations (FPOs) to 17 major international events for the promotion of millets and its value-added products during 2023, which has been declared by the United Nations as International Year of Millets.

“This is a good opportunity to boost our exports as India has very distinctive traditional varieties of millets which are loved by health-conscious people. However, a lot of promotion is required for increasing shipments of value-added millet products,” APEDA Chairman M Angamuthu said. He, however, declined to comment on the promotional plan.

Negligible export share

APEDA has set a target to raise the export of millets and their value-added products to $100 million by 2023-24 from $64.28 million in 2021-22.

The export of such products was $59.75 million in 2020-21, in which the share of value-added products was negligible. Though India is the top producer of millets, its export share is less than 15 per cent in the global trade of $470 million in 2021.

“India’s share in export of millets is at fifth position in the world now and we are confident to be among the top three countries in next two years,” he added.

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With the promotion of millets in the international events, more demand and awareness will be generated on Indian millets, Angamuthu said.

Sources said APEDA plans to participate in 17 fairs—3 in the US, 5 in Europe, 7 in Asia and one each in Australia and Africa starting from October 15, 2022 at SIAL Food, Paris.

Show-casing to importers

Indian embassies and high commissions in UAE, Nepal, Saudi Arabia, Oman, UK, US, Indonesia, Belgium, Japan, Germany, Italy and the Netherlands have been asked by the government to make more efforts for promotion of Indian millets since these countries are leading importers, sources said.

“Potential importers will be invited to India where we will show case various millet-based products and facilitate B2B meetings. The first such meeting is likely to be held in the first week of December in Delhi,” Angamuthu said.