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Area in Andaman & Nicobar to be the first large territory to get organic certification

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    4th May, 2021


About 14,491 hectare (ha) area in Andaman and Nicobar has been certified as organic, the first large contiguous territory to be done under a government scheme.

About the organic certification under LAC

  • Scheme: The organic certifications are given under the Large Area Certification (LAC) Scheme of the PGS-India (Participatory Guarantee System) certification programme.

  • Under LAC, each village in the area is considered as one cluster/group.

  • All farmers with their farmland and livestock need to adhere to the standard requirements and on being verified get certified enmass without the need to go under conversion period.

  • Certification is renewed on annual basis through verification by a process of peer appraisals as per the process of PGS-India.

Large Area Certification (LAC)

  •  The Department of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare under its flagship scheme of Paramparagat Krishi Vikas Yojna (PKVY) launched LAC.
  • It is a unique quick certification programme to harness these potential areas.
  • LAC is a Quick certification process that is cost-effective and farmers do not have to wait for 2-3 years for marketing PGS organic certified products.
    • As per the established norm of organic production systems, the areas having chemical input usage history are required to undergo a transition period of minimum 2-3 years to qualify as organic.
    • The certification process also requires elaborate documentation and time to time verification by the certification authorities.
  • Whereas under LAC requirements are simple and the area can be certified almost immediately.
  • The Government of India has certified 14,491 ha of such area under Car Nicobar and Nancowry group of islands in A&N Islands.

  • An expert committee has verified their organic status and recommended for declaration of the area as certified organic under the PGS-India certification programme.

  • This area becomes the first large contiguous territory to be conferred with organic certification.

India’s potential for organic certification

  • Area covered: India now has more than 30 lakh hectare area registered under organic certification and slowly more and more farmers are joining the movement.

  • Ranking: As per the international survey report (2021) India ranks at 5th place in terms of area and is at the top in terms of total number of producers (base year 2019).

  • Potential Regions: Lakshadweep and Ladakh, Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand, north-eastern states and tribal belts of Jharkhand and Chhattisgarh and desert districts of Rajasthan has also potential to be converted in organic areas.

  • Supportive schemes: To harness India’s organic potential ministry of agriculture has launched an organic certification support scheme under PKVY (Paramparagat Krishi Vikas Yojana).

  • Under the scheme, individual farmers can avail financial assistance for certification under any of the prevailing certification systems of NPOP (National programme for organic production) or PGS-India.

Paramparagat Krishi Vikas Yojana (PKVY)

  • It was launched in 2015.
  • Extension: It is an extended component of Soil Health Management (SHM) under the Centrally Sponsored Scheme (CSS), National Mission on Sustainable Agriculture (NMSA).
  • Aim: PKVY aims at supporting and promoting organic farming, in turn resulting in improvement of soil health.