India is the world’s largest producer and consumer of pulses, contributing nearly 24% to global production, Union Minister for Agriculture Shri Narendra Singh Tomar has said.
He also said that the country’s pulse production in the last five-six years has risen to 24 million tonnes (240 lakh tonnes) from 14 million tonnes (140 lakh tonnes).
“India is the world’s largest producer and consumer of pulses. India has almost become self-sufficient in producing pulses,” Tomar said at an international conference in Rome on World Pulses Day during a virtual address.
“India produced 23.15 million tonnes of pulses in 2019-20, which is 23.62 percent of global production,” he said in a statement.
Tomar further said protein-rich pulses are an essential crop for food baskets. He said the government was emphasizing on increasing the output of pulses to bridge the gap between supply and demand.
Tomar highlighted the numerous initiatives for the growth of the agriculture sector taken by the government since 2014. In 2019, the government launched the PM-KISAN scheme, within which Rs 1,15 lakh crore was transferred via direct bank transfer to over 10,5 crore farmers, he added.
Pulses, what are they?
Pulses are the edible seeds of plants in the family of legumes. Pulses develop in pods and come in a range of shapes, sizes and colours. The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) recognizes 11 types of pulses: dry beans, dry broad beans, dry peas, chickpeas, cow peas, pigeon peas, lentils, Bambara beans, vetches, lupines and pulses (not elsewhere specified – minor pulses that do not fall into one of the other categories).
Did you know that:
Pulses have a long and rich history. The first scientific proof of pulse comes from 11,000 years ago in the Fertile Crescent, a province in the Arabian Peninsula that was native to some of the earliest civilizations.