INM Division of the Department of Agriculture, Cooperation and Farmer’s Welfare (DAC & FW) through National Centre of Organic Farming (NCOF) is implementing Participatory Guarantee System (PGS). It is a quality assurance initiative that is locally relevant, emphasizes the participation of stakeholders, including producers and consumers and operates outside the frame of third party certification. The term PGS embodies the active participation of producers and other stakeholders in their organic guarantee process. PGS-India covers standards for crop production, animal production, food processing, handling and storage etc.
Participatory Guarantee System (PGS-India) : salient features
PGS-India programme was launched in 2011 by the Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare with National Centre of Organic Farming as its secretariat.
PGS-India is a decentralised certification system.
PGS-India is a locally applicable quality assurance system for grower group certification, implemented together by locally known small group of farmers, traders and consumers under the supervision of Regional Councils.
The programme with the nationwide network operates through 563 Regional Councils located across the country.
PGS-India programme is based on the standards of NPOP but is distinct in its certification procedures.
In 2015, financial assistance started through Paramparagat Krishi Vikas Yojana (PKVY) scheme, since then number of farmer groups/clusters have raised to 4178 and number of farmer increased to 173887 by March 2017.
Area under PGS-India certification has raised from 6064 ha in 2012-13 to 143817 ha land in March 2017.
The PKVY scheme is aiming to cover 5 lakh ha over a period of next three years forming 10000 clusters.
Ministry of Agriculture and Farmer’s Welfare provides a single PGS-India web portal and enhanced networking of farmers, RCs and marketers.
UID generated from the PGS-India web portal works as consumer verification code and helps in maintaining transparency.
The NCOF, RCOFs and RCs working under PGS-India system are supporting farmers to get at least 10-25% premium price for organic produce in the market.
Ministry of Agriculture and Farmer’s Welfare has launched the ‘Organic Outlet, Organic Restaurant/canteen and Organic Cafeteria to create awareness among consumers.
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