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Celebration of the International Year of Millets (IYM) 2023

Posted on: September 05, 2023


        The Embassy of India, Kathmandu organized an event today to celebrate the International Year of Millets (IYM) 2023. Dr. Bedu Ram Bhusal, Hon’ble Minister for Agriculture and Livestock Development, Government of Nepal was the Chief Guest at the occasion. The event was attended by the representatives of the Government of Nepal, the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), agricultural industries and businesses, and Ayush/medical community. 

2. Addressing the event, Shri Naveen Srivastava, Ambassador of India to Nepal, spoke about the initiatives being taken by the Government of India to celebrate IYM 2023, especially in the context of India’s G20 Presidency. He also mentioned about the various schemes in India to promote food processing, taking millets up the value chain, and India-Nepal agricultural cooperation, especially in the area of natural farming and collaboration between agricultural universities. 

3. Hon’ble Minister Dr. Bedu Ram Bhusal elaborated on the importance millets, “Shree Anna”, held in Nepali agriculture, and the various policy interventions made by the Government of Nepal to promote them.  He noted that Kodo millet is one of the main sources for ensuring food security of Nepali people and welcomed the simultaneous cultivation of maize and Kodo in hilly areas. He called for greater collaboration on agriculture between India and Nepal, identifying natural farming as one possible area of cooperation. Mr. Ken Shimizu, Representative of the FAO for Nepal and Bhutan, highlighted various initiatives being taken by the FAO during IYM 2023 to promote millets farming in Nepal.

4. Dr. Shyam Babu Yadav, President, Ayurveda Doctors Association of Nepal and Ms. Nani Shova Shakya, Dietician and Associate Professor, College of Applied Food and Dairy Technology, Kathmandu, spoke about the nutritional benefits of millets from the Ayush and nutritional science perspectives, respectively. An overview of millets market in Nepal was given by Jabsons Foods, an Indian company exporting millets products to Nepal. 

5. An exhibition of six varieties of millets was also displayed at the event. Prizes were also distributed for the winners of the Photo Challenge that was conducted by the Embassy preceding the event, and for which a number of entries were received from people from across the country showcasing how they were celebrating IYM 2023. The event was followed by dinner prepared using locally grown millets ingredients.

6. The United Nations General Assembly declared 2023 as the International Year of Millets on 5 March 2021 through a resolution tabled by India along with Bangladesh, Kenya, Nepal, Nigeria, Russia and Senegal and co-sponsored by more than 70 UN member states, with the aim to raise awareness about the importance of millets for food security, nutrition, and climate resilience.
 
7. The Government of India has adopted a multi-stakeholder engagement approach to make IYM 2023 a people's movement, positioning India as the 'Global Hub of Millets' through year-long national and global campaigns and activities.

8. The Embassy of India, Kathmandu will continue to promote stronger ties between India and Nepal through the development of sustainable agricultural practices for a healthier, greener future.

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