Srinagar: Principal Secretary, Agriculture Production and Farmers Welfare Department, Navin Kumar Choudhary on Wednesday chaired a meeting of State Seed Sub Committee at Civil Secretariat Srinagar regarding the formulation of nodal agency for certification of organic products in J&K.
After threadbare discussion over the need for creation of certification agency for organic products, Principal Secretary gave his approval for the creation of the agency. A notification to this end will be issued soon.
While giving outline of the agency, Navin Kumar Choudhary said that the agency is known as J&K Organic Products Certification Agency, Kashmir and J&K Organic Products Certification Agency Jammu. He said the agency will certify all the agriculture, horticulture and dairy organic products.
He further said that the agency will be headed by an Agro-Chemist, a Deputy Director rank officer, who will be assisted by at least one district level officer of Agriculture Department and one HDO with expertise in horticulture.
In this regard, he said, Govt will issue a notification giving legal sanctity to the agency. The agency will utilize the infrastructure of agriculture department and agriculture universities of both Kashmir and Jammu divisions.
Navin Choudhary also said that for effective analysis of products, an assistant professor will also be the member of the agency.
APEDA was nominated as central agency for building the capacity of newly created entities.
The Agency will adopt full process of organic certification as prescribed by National Programme for Organic Production.
It was given in the meeting that quarterly review of the functioning of the agency shall be held by Principal Secretary of AP&FWD.
It was also decided that both Directors of Agriculture department will identify at least six organic clusters each where these agencies will start working.
He directed that both Animal Husbandry Directors will nominate well qualified VAS to be included as members of their respective agencies.
Besides, Principal Secretary said that both directors of Agriculture department will contact a reputed agency of the country and organize 14 days training programme for the members of the newly created agencies.
Navin Kumar Choudhary further directed both directors of agriculture for formulation of draft rules, training module and infrastructure requirements for these agencies.
The meeting was attended by members of State Seed Sub Committee including Dir Agriculture, Kashmir; Director Research, SKUAST; Joint Director Agriculture, Extension, Kashmir; Dir Agriculture Inputs, Kashmir; and other members from Kashmir Division.
Secretary, Central Seed Committee cum Deputy Commissioner QC; Dir Agriculture Jammu; Dir, Law Enforcement; Dir Research SKUAST, Jammu; MD, APEDA; Joint Director Agriculture, Extension, Jammu; Dir Agriculture, Inputs Jammu and other members from Jammu Division participated in the meeting virtually.