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Need to fill gap between the farm and the fork as well as the plough and the plate: President Kovind at convocation of NIFTEM in Haryana
Addressing the first convocation of the National Institute of Food Technology Entrepreneurship and Management (NIFTEM) in Sonipat of Haryana recently, President Ram Nath Kovind said that India has been an agrarian economy ever since our ancestors planted many varieties of nutritious grains and a wide range of pulses since long.

He added that India food habits and recipes that change from state to state to symbolise diversity of India, which was great strength. He was of view that at the root of this strength are our farmers both men and women who toiled relentlessly and with great effort to grow food for us. They contribute to not just food security but actually national security, as per the official release. However, use of science and technology along the food chain was essential, he suggested.

Here are the excerpts from the released address of the President.

-The incorporation of technology in agriculture is not new in our country. Innovations were critical to our Green Revolution. Industrious farmers, including in the state we are in – Haryana – took advantage of these and increased productivity. The outcome is an India that is self-sufficient and self-reliant in food production.

-Our determined and committed farmers have produced food for our country; they have it in them to produce for the world. In the services sector, India has taken advantage of its enormous human talent and lower cost structures to build world-class industries.

- The farmers who perform such a selfless task often do so for limited returns, and face the uncertainty of the monsoon and the market. Truly, farming in our country is not simply a job – it is a tapasya.

 -Many varieties of nutritious grains and a wide range of pulses mark the Indian experience. So do food habits and recipes that change from state to state, if not from district to district. They symbolise the breadth and diversity of India – which is our great strength.

-In our country, there is still a sizeable gap between the farm and the fork – or perhaps between the plough and the plate. This gap is not just a matter of prices or of technology. It is also a gap of justice – justice that we as a society must do to our fellow citizens who toil in far-flung farms.

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