India Activities

SME needs in covid-19 crisis

Let’s not forget the quality of food in crisis, Indian millet entrepreneurs speak out

Pan-India survey highlights areas for government intervention

The Green Revolution was a success for stopping starvation but countries suffered nutritionally and environmentally. Let’s remember this during the COVID-19 crisis and ensure we support healthy food and sustainable practices, in addition to supporting entrepreneurs who are pioneers in bringing healthy, convenient and tasty food to us. See the results of a survey of millet entrepreneurs. See more

School Feeding Study

The first-ever ‘reality show for a cause’ with young chefs pan India. This drama-documentary captures the journey of 56 student chefs (28 teams) from 16 culinary institutes across India in their attempts to bring innovative millet cuisines to the table.  

Prime Minister Comentary

India Celebrated the year 2018 as the National Year of Millet., Prime Minister of India, Mr Narendra Modi, spoke on the benefits of millets and coarse grains at the Yoga Awards and Ayush Centre Launch ceremony on 30 August 2019 and at inauguration of World Food India 2017, held between 3-5 November 2017 at New Delhi. He highlighted the role of millets in ensuring food security and nutrition, underlining their resilience to adverse climate conditions, and their potential to ensure increased incomes for resource-poor farmers.

Industry Priorities

Smart Food Initiative identified several key issues in developing the value chain for Millets and Sorghum in India: Industry workshops, focus groups and a survey with 78 small to medium enterprises (including farmer producer organizations and product manufacturers) were undertaken.

Top challenges included:

  • Attracting Investment Funding
  • Costs to sell through large retail chains
  • Lack of awareness among consumers
  • Image of millets as old-fashioned food.

Smart Food Initiative aims to address these issues and strengthen the supply chain through cluster development model (Read more).

Smart Food Initiative aims to bring millets into mainstream to reach the mass market. A range of activities will be used, including:

  • Making it as easy and quick as possible to prepare tasty millet dishes. See recipes section – but much more to come; and
  • Making it easy to find millet producers and products. Here is the list of Farmer Producer Organizations (FPOs) producing millets and Sorghum in India. New tools are being developed for finding products made from Millets and Sorghum.
  • Change the image of millets to something modern and create a buzz around them. A range of campaign work and engaging celebrity chefs will be undertaken.

Engaging Food Service Industry: Smart Food is a catalyst to spread the value and opportunities for Food service to work with millets. We have worked with Government of Karnataka (Organics and Millets Trade Fair) and MS Ramaiah University of Applied Sciences.

Industry Groups

Smart Food Whatsapp Group

Millets – Organic Farming – Chemical Free Food & Health Facebook Group

Overview paper – from the “State of India’s Livelihoods Report 2019”

THE NEXUS OF BIG ISSUES THAT NEED SOLVING

In the wake of climate change and water scarcity, it is important to ensure that the Indian agriculture sector is equipped with climate resilient approaches and crops that can survivemore stressful environments to maintain food production and meet the increasing demand. On the other hand, there is a global shift towards linking agriculture and nutrition to effectivelycombat the issues relating to nutrition and health. This calls for an overarching need to focus on crops that are suited to meet the current environmental challenges, nutritional needs and provide a sustainable livelihood for the farmers.

Read FULL REPORT about the nexus and key players in the value chain, including:

  • Initiatives by Central and State Governments
  • Leading NGOs
  • the Private Sector Millet Revolution
  • International efforts

Government Initiatives

Supporting the government of India: Smart Food has contributed to the government strategies. This include some Government of India initiatives:

Signing of an MOU between ICRISAT and IIMR to jointly coordinate Smart Food initiatives in India.

Smart Food millet efforts in India are coordinated in collaboration with:

Incubators

Incubators for millet entrepreneurs

Farmers/Supplies

For a list of millet related farmer producer organizations,

please see: https://www.smartfood.org/farmer-producer-organizations/

Processing Equipment

Information is with thanks to Dr V. Palanimuthu, Professor & University Head (Ag Engg), AICRP (Post Harvest Engineering & Technology)University of Agricultural Sciences,GKVK, Bangalore, India

Latest News and Updates

In Asia the future of food rests in ‘Many’ and not ‘More’ – Dr Ravi Khetarpal

In Asia the future of food rests in ‘Many’ and not ‘More’ – Dr Ravi Khetarpal

Millets and other ancient grains have been brought into the PDS system as well: Prashant Parameswaran

Millets and other ancient grains have been brought into the PDS system as well: Prashant Parameswaran

Food Systems Need Urgent Overhaul to Combat Desertification

Food Systems Need Urgent Overhaul to Combat Desertification

Study suggests we should be eating more millets

Study suggests we should be eating more millets

Millet entrepreneurs emphasise for maintaining quality of food in COVID-19 crisis

Millet entrepreneurs emphasise for maintaining quality of food in COVID-19 crisis

India needs to choose Smart Foods to thwart deficiencies in diets; drought

India needs to choose Smart Foods to thwart deficiencies in diets; drought

Reality video series launched with student chefs from 16 schools across India

Reality video series launched with student chefs from 16 schools across India

Superfoods Can’t Save Our Broken System – But Smart Food Can

Superfoods Can’t Save Our Broken System – But Smart Food Can

Smart Food Culinary Challenge videos featuring student chefs kick off

Smart Food Culinary Challenge videos featuring student chefs kick off

Reality video series launched with student chefs from 16 schools across India

Reality video series launched with student chefs from 16 schools across India

Millets can boost child growth by 50%: Study

Millets can boost child growth by 50%: Study

Farming Smart Foods

Farming Smart Foods

ICRISAT ropes in UK varsity for research in genomics & modern breeding of Smart Food crops for health & nutrition.

ICRISAT ropes in UK varsity for research in genomics & modern breeding of Smart Food crops for health & nutrition.

Chef’s Smart Recipes for Customers, Farmers and the Planet

Chef’s Smart Recipes for Customers, Farmers and the Planet

Smart Food takes the Millet Revolution to South Asia

Smart Food takes the Millet Revolution to South Asia

Climate-Friendly Smart Food Like Millets The Way Forward For Nutrition Mission: Dr Arabinda Padhee Of ICRISAT

Climate-Friendly Smart Food Like Millets The Way Forward For Nutrition Mission: Dr Arabinda Padhee Of ICRISAT

Indian Celebrity Chef Cooks Up Traditional Grains and Fair Prices for Farmers

Indian Celebrity Chef Cooks Up Traditional Grains and Fair Prices for Farmers

Chapatis of Pearl Millet For A Changing Climate

Chapatis of Pearl Millet For A Changing Climate

Smart food for education is key

Smart food for education is key

119 Organizations Shaking Up the Food System in 2019

119 Organizations Shaking Up the Food System in 2019

Study shows consumer acceptance to diversify staples with Smart Foods

Study shows consumer acceptance to diversify staples with Smart Foods

Sehgal Foundation and Smart Food align to intensify efforts

Sehgal Foundation and Smart Food align to intensify efforts

Smart Food Culinary Challenge Finale leaves audience cheering

Smart Food Culinary Challenge Finale leaves audience cheering

Africa and Asia come together to lead a global initiative to diversify staples

Africa and Asia come together to lead a global initiative to diversify staples

First Smart Food Culinary Symposium prepares ground for change in millets industry

First Smart Food Culinary Symposium prepares ground for change in millets industry

Placing Smart Food in industrial canteen menus

Placing Smart Food in industrial canteen menus

Young chefs face-off in first Smart Food Culinary Challenge

Young chefs face-off in first Smart Food Culinary Challenge

Smart Food Culinary Challenge

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