14 Feb 2014

President inaugurates World Congress on Agro-forestry and presents Krishi Karman Awards

President of India, Shri Pranab Mukherjee
The President of India, Shri Pranab Mukherjee inaugurated the World Congress on Agro-forestry, 2014 and presented the Krishi Karman Awards of the Union Ministry of Agriculture, Government of India today (February 10, 2014) at Vigyan Bhavan, New Delhi. 

Speaking on the occasion, the President said that Agro-forestry offers a significant opening in resetting priorities on farm sustainability. 

It is emerging as a major domain in environmentally sustainable food production systems. Agro-forestry system produces food, fuel and fibre; contributes to food and nutritional security; sustains livelihoods; helps in preventing deforestation; increases biodiversity; protects water resources, and reduces erosion. 

The President said that agro-forestry holds immense promise in enhancing the productivity of land in an environmentally and economically sustainable manner. 

Greater research is required in agro-forestry, focused on creating eco-technologies that purposefully blend traditional ecological prudence with renewable energy technology. 

The President stated that despite the large spinoffs agro-forestry can deliver, its development is hampered by lack of policy incentives, inadequate knowledge dissemination, legal constraints and poor coordination among its beneficiary sectors. 

Inadequate investment, lack of suitable extension strategies and weak market linkages compound the woes of this sector. 

He stressed that rather than being discouraged by long gestation periods normally associated with agro-forestry projects, we need innovative models that encourage investment in this sector. 

The Congress on the theme of ‘Trees for Life: Accelerating the Impact of Agro-forestry’ is jointly organized by the Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR), World Agro-forestry Centre and the Indian Society of Agro-forestry. 

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