On Sunday, Union Fisheries Minister Livestock Parshottam Rupala called on stakeholders to work towards establishing region-specific animal disease free zones in the country to boost exports of value-added meat products . Rupala, at the inauguration of the National Business Meeting on Promoting Exports of Value-Added Meat Products organized by the Agricultural and Processed Food Export Development Authority (APEDA) in New Delhi on March 25, declared that even in the event of a single outbreak of disease among poultry birds, the entire country is qualified as “affected by the disease”.
“All stakeholders need to take small steps and work to declare small regions – a few districts at a time – as disease-free,” he said referring to the model of Sikkim declared as a biological state and its products. command a premium in the market. In September 2019, Prime Minister Narendra Modi launched the National Animal Disease Control Program to control and eradicate foot-and-mouth disease and brucellosis among livestock in the country.
Dr. M Angamuthu, President of APEDA, in his welcome address to the national meeting, informed the delegates that livestock has a vital role to play in improving farmers’ incomes. He said India has been the pioneer in meat export and has maintained growth even during the COVID-19 pandemic.
“India is the largest exporter of beef and frozen meat, while achieving significant growth in exports of organic honey and fish products,” Dr Angamuthu said. APEDA promotes exports of fresh and processed agricultural and animal products by establishing standards and specifications, suggesting and supporting the improvement of packaging, marketing strategies, facilitating the development of products for export, defining export zones and organizing buyer-seller meetings to connect our exporters with relevant importers in the destination markets. (ANI)
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