Enquiry revealed that almost 5 thousand out of 8,000 registered Farmer Producer Organizations (FPOs) have been registered on Open Network for Digital Commerce (ONDC) portal for selling the produce online to consumers across the country. 

The onboarding of FPOs on ONDC to reach out to their buyers in any part of the country is in line with the Central government objective of providing growers with better market access. 

The move aims to empower FPOs with direct access to digital marketing, online payment, business-to-business and business-to-consumer transactions.  Over 8,000 FPOs have been registered against government target of 10,000 under a new Central Sector Scheme titled "Formation and Promotion of 10,000 Farmer Produce Organizations (FPOs)" launched in 2020 with budgetary provision of Rs 6,865 crore. 

Aggregation of small, marginal and landless farmers into FPOs help enhance economic strength & market linkages of farmers for enhancing their income. FPOs facilitate farmers with access to improved technology, credit, better input and more markets to incentivize them to produce better quality commodity.

FPOs are provided financial assistance up to Rs 18.00 lakh per FPO for a period of 3 years. In addition to this, provision has been made for matching equity grant up to Rs. 2,000 per farmer member of FPO with a limit of Rs. 15.00 lakh per FPO and a credit guarantee facility up to Rs. 2 crore of project loan per FPO from eligible lending institution to ensure institutional credit accessibility to FPOs. 

So far, Credit Guarantee has been issued to 1,101 FPOs worth guaranted coverage of Rs 246.0 crore covering more than 10.2 lakh farmers.  Matching equity grant amounting to Rs 145.1 crore has been transferred directly to the bank account of the eligible 3,187 FPOs. 

Formation & promotion of FPOs is the first step for converting Krishi into Atmanirbhar Krishi. The initiative enhances cost effective production and productivity and higher net incomes to the member of the FPO. It also improves rural economy and create job opportunities for rural youths in villages itself. This was the major step towards improving farmers’ income substantially.

FPOs are to be developed in produce clusters, wherein agricultural and horticultural produces are grown / cultivated for leveraging economies of scale and improving market access for members. “One District One Product” cluster to promote specialization and better processing, marketing, branding & export.  Further Agriculture value chain organizations forming FPOs and facilitating 60% of market linkages for members produce. 

The key objectives of the scheme are: 

  • To provide holistic and broad-based supportive ecosystem to form new 10,000 FPOs to facilitate development of and sustainable income-oriented farming and for overall socio-economic development and wellbeing of agrarian communities.
  • To enhance productivity through efficient, cost-effective and sustainable resource use and realize higher returns through better liquidity and market linkages for their produce and become sustainable through collective action.
  • To provide handholding and support to new FPOs up to 5 years from the year of creation in all aspects of management of FPO, inputs, production, processing and value addition, market linkages, credit linkages and use of technology etc.
  • To provide effective capacity building to FPOs to develop agriculture-entrepreneurship skills to become economically viable and self-sustaining beyond the period of support from government.
  • FPOs can be registered either under Part IXA of Companies Act or under Co-operative Societies
-----------------------------Advertisement------------------------------------

must read