The following three ordinances were passed by the President of India on 5th June, 2020:
1. The Farmers’ Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Ordinance, 2020
(To promote barrier-free inter-state and intra-state trade in agriculture produce)
2. The Farmers (Empowerment and Protection) Agreement on Price Assurance and Farm Services Ordinance, 2020
(Farmers empowered to engage with processors, aggregators, wholesalers, large retailers, exporters etc.)
3. The Essential Commodities (Amendment) Ordinance, 2020
(Regulatory environment liberalized for farmers through amendment to Essential Commodities Act.)
1. THE FARMERS’ PRODUCE TRADE AND COMMERCE (PROMOTION AND FACILITATION) ORDINANCE, 2020
The Farmers’ Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Ordinance, 2020 was promulgated on June 5, 2020.
Farmers’ produce means food items including cereals such as wheat and rice, oilseeds, oils, vegetables, fruits, spice, and sugarcane.
It also includes: (i) products of poultry, piggery, goatery, fishery, dairy, (ii) raw cotton and jute, and (iii) cattle fodder.
AIMS AND OBJECTIVES OF THE ORDINANCE:
- The ordinance basically aims at creating additional trading opportunities outside the APMC market yards to help farmers get remunerative prices due to additional competition.
- This will supplement the existing MSP procurement system which is providing stable income to farmers.
- It will certainly pave the way for creating One India, One Agriculture Market.
Eligibility for trade: The Ordinance allows farmers, farm producer organisations as well as anyone who buys farmers’ produce for: (i) wholesale trade, (ii) retail, (iii) end-use, (iv) value addition, (v) processing, (vi) manufacturing, (vii) export, or (viii) consumption, to engage in such intra-state or inter-state trade.
- It will provide for the creation of an ecosystem where the farmers and traders enjoy the freedom of choice relating to sale and purchase of farmers’ produce which facilitates remunerative prices through competitive alternative trading channels.
- It seeks to provide for barrier-free trade of farmers’ produce outside the markets notified under the various state agricultural produce market laws (state APMC Acts).
- The Ordinance will prevail over state APMC Acts.
- Besides, the Ordinance will provide a facilitative framework for electronic trading and matters connected therewith or incidental thereto.