Merchants’ Chamber of Commerce & Industry organized an Interactive Session on “Agri–business Opportunities in West Bengal” today. The Session was addressed by:
* Dr. Sanjeev Chopra, IAS, Additional Chief Secretary, Department of Agriculture, Govt. of West Bengal – Chairman and Moderator of the Session.
* Shri Pradip Kumar Mazumdar, Chief Advisor to the Chief Minister of West Bengal for Agriculture & Allied sectors – as the Chief Guest
* Smt. Nandini Chakravorty, IAS, Secretary, Food Processing Industries and Horticulture, Govt. of West Bengal
* Dr. Ravi Inder Singh, IAS, Secretary, Fisheries Department, Govt. of West Bengal and
* Shri Rajesh Kumar Sinha, IAS, Secretary, Department of Agriculture Marketing, Govt. of West Bengal
Addressing the House Dr. Sanjeev Chopra spoke about the immense potential of West Bengal to become the 1st and foremost state in terms of agri business. There had been a paradigm shift in the policy initiatives of the state govt. It had become demand driven supply management, he said and invited private players to develop infrastructure and multi purpose cold chain.
Outlining the strategic initiatives, Shri Pradip Kumar Mazumdar highlighted on the fisheries segment, horticulture, sesame cultivation for sesame oil, which has good export potential, maize for poultry and fish feed, besides human consumption. He also invited PPP for rice milling and solvent extraction of rice bran oil.
Smt Nandini Chakravorty spoke about the post harvest losses, demand supply gap, as also export of mangoes to Europe and litchis to Middle East.
Dr. Ravi Inder Singh mentioned about establishment of modern hatcheries for high quality fish seed. He also informed about the upcoming fish farming hub in Swarup Nagar in Rajarhat.
Shri Rajesh Kumar Sinha spoke about having 186 Krishak Bazars already in place as also of having Sufal Bangla markets in every block for realization of better price to farmers and providing a better platform for agri marketing by farmers.
The Welcome Address was delivered by Shri Ramesh Agarwal, President, MCCI, who spoke about the growth in agri sector in the state and also of exploring the linkages.