Prime Minister To Address Global Potato Conclave On Jan. 28 Via Video Conference
Narendra Modi, India’s prime minister, speaks at the Advancing Asia Conference in New Delhi, India. (Photographer: Kuni Takahashi/Bloomberg *** Local Caption *** Narendra Modi)  

Prime Minister To Address Global Potato Conclave On Jan. 28 Via Video Conference

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Prime Minister Narendra Modi will address the Global Potato Conclave through a remote video conference on Jan. 28.

The three-day event will be held at Gandhinagar, Gujarat. Modi is expected to take an overall view of the achievements and opportunities in the area of potato research, trade, industry and value chain management, and set a roadmap for the decade, according to an official statement.

The conference is being held in Gujarat because the state is one of the leading potato producers in the country and uses modern methods of agriculture like sprinklers and drip irrigation for cultivation, it said. Besides, the state also has the best of the cold storage facilities and linkages and is a hub for major potato processing industries and exporters.

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The conclave is being organised by the Indian Potato Association in collaboration with Delhi-based Indian Council of Agricultural Research and Shimla-based Central Potato Research Institute and Peru's International Potato Center.

The event, which is organised once a decade, will review the achievements in potato sector and set roadmap for forthcoming decade. The last two conferences were held in 1999 and 2008. It will also provide an opportunity for all stakeholders to discuss various issues concerning the sector and decide the future plans at one common platform.

Issues such as shortage of planting material, post-harvest losses, needs for enhanced processing, export and diversified utilisation and necessary policy support, use of certified seed as well as long distance transport and export promotion -- will be deliberated during the three-day conference which will be have total 10 themes, the statement added. Besides the conference, agri-expo and potato field day are also being held at the event.

Potato acreage in Gujarat has increased more than two-fold to 13.3 lakh hectare in 2017-18 from 4.97 lakh hectare in 2006-07, while yields are at over 30 tonne per hectare in the state, as per government data.

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