Entrepreneurs seek clarity on ‘Naturally Nagaland’ products
Dimapur, March 15 (EMN): Department of Agriculture on Monday held an interaction session with entrepreneurs to discuss their problems and export promotion on ‘Naturally Nagaland’ products.
Agriculture Production Commissioner (APC), Y Kikheto Sema, speaking during the session at Hotel Saramati in Dimapur, shared that on January 27, 2020, former missions such as bio resources, honey, industries and commerce, bamboo mission etc. decided to produce something to be marketed outside the state under the umbrella ‘Naturally Nagaland’.
He added that on February 6, 2020, a committee was constituted to regulate Naturally Nagaland and it was registered by the government of Nagaland under Home department in February this year.
The APC said that the committee also decided to rename the state emporium at Delhi and Kolkata as Naturally Nagaland citing that it was limited to only Nagaland handloom and handicraft products and all kinds of products from Nagaland can be sold.
During the interaction session, some of the issues raised by the entrepreneurs were communication problems, human resources issues, lack of market intelligence, electricity; adding that the concerned department sometimes ended up as an enterprise rather than facilitators. They therefore appealed to the department to arrange pricing mechanism, single window clearance and clarification on what products comes under Naturally Nagaland.
During the interaction, director of horticulture, Dr. R Elithung Lotha explained on organic certification stating that it takes three years to get certified as organic, which is valid only for one year. Organic certification is required for products to be exported to other countries, he said.
Lotha further added that organic products sold within India need a certification called Participatory Guarantee System of India (PGS), ‘which is much cheaper to achieve’.
The APC encouraged the gathering to preserve their own seeds for reproduction instead of ordering from other states without knowing the origin of the seeds.
Sema also clarified on ‘Naturally Nagaland’ stating that any product grown in Nagaland could be sold at Naturally Nagaland provided the individual was willing to sell their product.
Sema further added that 120 bedded farmer’s hotel was constructed at Agri Expo and would be completed within a couple of years. The APC also emphasised on wholesale markets as farmers and encouraged the gathering to educate farmers on wholesale and retail market. He also advised the gathering that the use of fertilisers should be stopped in order to achieve naturally organic products.
Further, Sema advised the young entrepreneurs to not always depend on the government and if they do so, they would ‘definitely fail as entrepreneurs’.