The Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority, (APEDA) has decided to brand and market organic foods from Ladakh in order to increase agricultural exports and local farmers’ incomes. The endeavour will be carried out in collaboration with Union territory officials as well as the Defence Institute of High-Altitude Research (DIHAR).
“Recognized areas of work comprise development of production of medicinal fruits such as sea buckthorn, apricot, and organic food, as well as adoption of the traceability system, capacity-building of farmers, and value addition of products,” according to a statement from the commerce ministry.
APEDA will give technical help to stakeholders like businesses, bureaucrats, and farmers in the areas of stakeholder capacity building, branding and marketing of Ladakhi products, and transforming Ladakh into a “organic” region. APEDA will also lend a hand in the branding and promotion of Ladakhi products, particularly sea buckthorn, which is high in Vitamin C, omega-3 fatty acids, and other critical elements.
During the discussions with Ladakh officials, APEDA emphasized the importance of using little or no pesticides in farming and recommended the use of traceability mechanisms to aid in the branding of Ladakhi products. The purpose of these cooperation, according to the commerce ministry, is to ensure that Ladakh reaches its goal of being an organic region by 2025.
Ladakh officials have organized an organic study group as part of the Mission Organic Development Initiative to develop “organic” certification papers and phase out the certification procedure. Farmers can now cultivate leafy crops at -25 degrees thanks to DIHAR’s scientific interventions with the Ladakh administration. “APEDA will continue to work with authorities from the agriculture and horticulture agencies of Leh and Ladakh districts, the Sher-e-Kashmir University of Agricultural Sciences and Technology of Jammu, DIHAR, and entrepreneurs for the extensive development of agriculture in Ladakh,” according to the commerce ministry.