India looks to organics to increase share of Basmati exports

Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority (APEDA), under the ministry of commerce and industry, is convening a workshop with stakeholders on increasing the share of organic Basmati rice in India’s Basmati exports.

In order to help Basmati exporters and farmers, APEDA has set up a Basmati Export Development Foundation (BEDF) as a registered society. BEDF has state-of-the-art laboratory with facilities for DNA finger printing for variety identification of Basmati rice and testing of pesticide residues, aflatoxins and heavy metals. The laboratory along with a demonstration and training farm has been set up at the campus of SVP University of Agriculture and Technology, Modipuram. The society is seeking accreditation as an inspection body in accordance with ISO: IEC: 17020. 
The foundation’s activities are focused on strengthening the supply chain for export of Basmati rice. The decision to organise a workshop with stakeholders on increasing the share of organic Basmati rice was taken at the annual general meeting of BEDF on Tuesday, 24 November. It was also decided to encourage value addition for export products and product diversification.
Basmati rice is the largest agro product exported from India. During 2019-20 India exported 4.45 million tonnes of Basmati rice valued at $4.33 billion. Over the last 10 years, India’s Basmati rice exports have more than doubled. During 2009-10 export of Basmati rice was of the order of 2.17 million tonnes. The major markets are Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Iran, EU and the US. Basmati rice is a registered Geographical Indication (GI) product.