Agriculture is the mainstay of the Indian economy, providing employment to 52 per cent of its workforce. The agriculture and food processing sector plays an instrumental role in augmenting the growth of the economy, as it is an important source of raw material for the industrial sector.
India’s agrarian culture and varied regional climate have made a significant contribution to the global food basket. Indian curries, mangoes, snacks and spices are known for their excellent quality worldwide. Globally, India holds the top position in the following food segments:
- India is the largest producer of milk in the world (127.9 million tonnes)
- India has the largest buffalo population (111 million)
- It is the largest producer of mangoes in the world (16.1 million tonnes)
- It is also the largest producer of bananas (28.4 million tonnes)
- It occupies the second position in fruit (76.4 million tonnes ) and vegetable production (156.3 million tonnes)
- It is the second-largest producer of fish in the world (8.6 million tonnes)
The exports of agriculture products has touched US$ 37,029 million in 2012-13, registering a growth of 13.6 per cent over the previous year. Exports of cereals, fresh and processed fruits and vegetables, floriculture, animal products and other processed foods generated a revenue of US$ 22,138 million, accounting for 59.7 per cent of total agriculture exports.