Odisha: Agriculture Secy Urges Depts to Include Millet-based Snacks in Official Meetings, Conferences

Bhubaneswar: Principal Secretary of Department of Agriculture and Farmers’ Empowerment, Government of Odisha, Dr. Arabinda Kumar Padhee has asked the government departments to include millet-based snacks in the official meetings and conferences.

The Agriculture Secretary wrote a letter to Additional Chief Secretary, Principal Secretary, Commissioner-cum-Secretary, Secretary (all departments) requesting them to consider inclusion of nutrition-rich millet snacks in the official meetings of their departments.

Under the guidance of Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik, Department of Agriculture & Farmers’ Empowerment is implementing the flagship initiative, the Odisha Millets Mission (OMM) in 19 districts of the State, he said.

Millets are small seeded cereals which are climate resilient and powerhouse of nutrition. OMM aims to improve livelihoods of vulnerable rainfed farmers by reviving millets in farms and plates. Odisha Millets Mission has been recognized nationally and globally as one of the best models for promotion of millets. The Government of India has also asked states to adopt the Odisha model for promotion of millets, Padhee stated.

The year 2023 has been declared as International Year of Millets (IYOM) by the United Nations. An active celebration and revalorization of consumption of millets is proposed to be undertaken in the run up to IYOM 2023 by the Department of Agriculture & Farmers’ Empowerment.

One of the key interventions under OMM is promotion of value addition enterprises through Women SHGs under Mission Shakti. As part of the collaboration, Millet Shakti outlets are being established in different parts of the State. You would be happy to know that a Millet Shakti outlet in Krushi Bhavan anchored by Maa Shaktimayee WSHG has recently been recognized as best WSHG millet value addition initiative by ICAR and Government of India.
“In this regard, the Department requests your good offices to consider inclusion of nutrition-rich millet snacks in the official meetings of your Departments”, he further said.

Millets based products like cookies, mixture, sticks, khurma, nimki. sev. paha, chatua, etc are extremely tasty and found wide acceptance amongst the consumers. It would be a great economic opportunity for the Mission Shakti WSHGs, trained under OMM, to supply the millet-based snacks to various Departments. This will help in spreading awareness on millets and provide livelihood support to a host of people in the value chain, the letter mentioned.

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