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Certification of seeds to be made mandatory

Topics covered:

  1. Food processing and related industries in India- scope and significance, location, upstream and downstream requirements, supply chain management.

 

Certification of seeds to be made mandatory

 

What to study?

For prelims and mains: Mandatory certification- need, issues, challenges and significance.

 

Context: The Centre is planning to mandate uniform certification of seed by amending the Seeds Act, 1966.

 

Need for mandatory certification:

More than half of all seeds sold in India are not certified by any proper testing agency, and are often of poor quality.

Besides, the existing legislation that was enacted over half a century ago.

 

Key changes proposed:

The 1966 Act starts with these words: “An Act to provide for regulating the quality of certain seeds for sale…” The new Bill removes the word “certain”, and aims to regulate the quality of all seeds sold in the country, as well as exported and imported seeds.

The new law will also raise the stakes by increasing penalties for non-compliance. Currently, the fine ranges from ₹500 to ₹5,000.

 

Significance of the move:

This could increase overall agricultural productivity by up to 25%.

The main aim of the new legislation is to bring uniformity to the process of quality regulation.

 

Sources: the Hindu.