Agriculture in India contributes nearly twenty per cent to the gross domestic product (GDP). Agricultural products not only supply raw materials to agrarian-based industries but also account for about ten per cent of India’s export earnings.
The growth of the agriculture and allied sectors would be around 5.4 per cent during 2010-11 contributed by a good monsoon, according to the Economic Survey 2010-11. According to the Economic Survey, the need for a second Green Revolution has become imperative, with focus on growing more of nutrition rich plants like fruits, vegetables and pulses which were never considered in the initial Green Revolution. Further diversification should also come in form of developing fisheries, poultry farming, livestock rearing, and horticulture. Concentration should also be given to rain-fed regions for increasing productivity of farms.
The survey states that a holistic approach involving development in agricultural research, offering irrigational and agricultural inputs, and effective utilisation of technology towards increasing productivity is necessary. It noted that higher agricultural yields are needed both for catering to local food requirements and achieving a sustained growth path. A path of ‘inclusive growth’ involving both private and government investments should be envisaged. Higher investments augmented with correct policies and strategies are necessary conditions to achieve this sustained growth path.
The country's foodgrain output is expected to reach 235.88 million tonnes (MT) in 2010-11, according to the second advanced estimates of the Union Ministry of Agriculture. Further, India is estimated to produce 94.11MT of rice and 40.21MT of coarse cereals during the period.
The oilseeds production is expected to rise to 30.25 MT in 2010-11 as against 24.8 MT in 2009-10. Sugarcane output would be around 340.55 MT compared with 292 MT last year, while cotton output is projected at 33.93 million bales (170 kg each bale) as against 24.2 million bales last year.
According to the government's agri-trade promotion body, Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority (APEDA), India's exports of agricultural and floricultural products, fruits and vegetables, animal products, cereals and processed food products was worth US$ 5.46 billion during April-November 2010-11.
India's agri-export turnover is expected to rise to nearly US$ 18 billion by 2014, according to APEDA.