The Union Cabinet, chaired by Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi, has approved a historic decision to set up and promote a national-level multi-state seed cooperative society.

This cooperative society is to be set up under Multi-State Cooperative Societies (MSCS) Act, 2002. As per the approved guidelines, the new cooperative society will act as an apex organization.

This organisation will work for the production, procurement, processing, branding, labelling, packaging, storage, marketing and distribution of quality seeds; strategic research & development; and to develop a system for the preservation and promotion of indigenous natural seeds; through various cooperative societies across the country with support from relevant ministries especially Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare, Indian Council for Agricultural Research (ICAR) and national Seed Corporation (NSC) through their schemes and agencies following the ‘Whole of the Government Approach’.

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This means all those politicians like NCP leader Sharad Pawar who virtually dominated and ruled cooperative societies in their respective states and regions for decades will be rooted out automatically. They no longer can keep state-run cooperative societies as their pocket organisations for money-making enterprises.

The Prime Minister has observed that all efforts should be made to leverage the strengths of cooperatives and transform them into successful and vibrant business enterprises.

Why so? The new guidelines say the aim was to realize the vision of “Sahakar-se-Samriddhi’ as cooperatives hold the key to rural economic transformation in the country in agriculture and allied sectors. 

PACS to APEX: Primary to national level cooperatives societies including primary societies, district, state and national level federations and multi-state cooperative societies can become its member.  All these cooperatives will have their elected representatives in the Board of the society as per its bye-laws. 

The national-level multi-state seed cooperative society would act as an apex organization for the production, procurement, processing, branding, labelling, packaging, storage, marketing and distribution of quality seeds; strategic research & development; and to develop a system for preservation and promotion of indigenous natural seeds; through various cooperative societies across the country with support from relevant ministries especially Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare, Indian Council for Agricultural Research (ICAR) and National Seed Corporation (NSC) through their schemes and agencies. 

The proposed society will help to increase the seed replacement rate, and varietal replacement rate, ensuring the role of farmers in quality seed cultivation and seed variety trials, production and distribution of certified seeds with a single brand name, by utilizing the network of all levels of cooperatives.  

The availability of quality seeds will help in increasing agricultural productivity in strengthening food security and also increasing the income of the farmers. The members will benefit both by the realization of better prices by the production of quality seeds, higher production of crops by use of High Yielding Variety (HYV)seeds and also by dividend distributed out of the surplus generated by the society.

The seed cooperative society will involve all forms of cooperative structures and all other means to increase the SRR, VRR by ensuring the role of farmers in quality seed cultivation and seed variety trials, production and distribution of certified seeds with a single brand name.

Quality seeds production through this national-level seed cooperative society will increase the agriculture production in the country thereby leading to more employment in the agriculture and cooperative sector; reducing the dependence on imported seeds and provide boost to rural economy, promoting “Make in India” and leading to Atmanirbhar Bharat.

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