India currently exports its organic products seamlessly to 58 countries. Among the export markets listed by the Ministry are Australia, Canada, European Union, Israel, UK, US, Switzerland and South Korea.
A Mutual Recognition Agreement will enable India to streamline the export of organic products to the UAE.
Dr M Angamuthu, Chairman of the Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority (APEDA) said Indian organic products, nutraceuticals and health food are gaining in demand abroad. The Coronavirus pandemic has created greater awareness worldwide on the benefits of such products.
APEDA is an agency under India’s Ministry of Commerce and Industry which facilitates the export of scheduled products through promotional activities. These include organizing international buyer-seller meets, participation of exporters in trade events in importing countries, and product promotion programmes geared for specific markets.
In the Gulf, a series of virtual buyer-seller meets with potential importers in the UAE and Kuwait for Indian agricultural and processed food products have replaced physical trade missions since the onset of COVID-19.
India’s export of organic food products rose by 51 per cent in value to US$ 1040 million during the financial year 2020-21 compared to the previous year, the Commerce Ministry said. "The growth in organic products has been achieved despite logistical and operational challenges posed by the COVID19 pandemic," it said.
Organic products are currently exported from India only if they are produced, processed, packed and labelled as per the requirements of a National Programme for Organic Production (NPOP), supervised by APEDA The NPOP certification has been recognised by several countries, eliminating the need for additional certification.
A Mutual Recognition Agreement will facilitate this process. Organic products covered under the bilateral agreement with the NPOP label need not to be recertified for import from the UAE to India. ■
According to data gathered by environmental campaign group Surfers Against Sewage (SAS), there has been storm sewage discharge into the waters at beaches in Cornwall, Devon, Sussex, Essex, Lancashire, Lincolnshire, Northumberland and Cumbria.