Pulses form an integral part of traditional diets in India, and are the main source of protein for the majority of the country’s population. However, India is the largest importer of pulses in the world - accounting for one-third of global consumption - and efforts are needed to raise productivity and close the country’s supply-demand gap.
Boosting pulse productivity and strengthening food and nutrition security is the aim of an ICARDA partnership with India’s Department of Agriculture and Farmers’ Empowerment, and the Government of Odisha, a project entitled “Variety, technology and seed system development for pulses in Odisha – Odisha Pulse Mission (OPM).”
The initiative held its Annual Review and Planning Workshop last month in Bhubaneswar, Odisha, to discuss progress and plan future activities to raise the region’s productivity.
Speaking at the event, Mr. Gagan Kumar Dhal, Agricultural Production Commissioner of the Department of Agriculture and Farmers’ Empowerment, gave positive feedback on ICARDA activities, acknowledging the Center’s contribution to enhancing pulses production for nutritional security through improved resilient pulse varieties and enhanced agricultural production systems. Mr. Dhal stated that Odisha’s state government was committed to strengthening its cooperation with ICARDA during the project’s second phase.
More than 130 participants attended the review and planning meeting. ICARDA was represented by Dr. Ashutosh Sarker, Regional Coordinator of South Asia and China Regional Program , Dr. Chandrashekhar Biradar, Head of Geoinformatics Unit, Dr. Nigamananda Swain, Watershed Scientist, and Mr. Partha Sarathy Adhya, Senior Finance and Administration Officer.