COVID-19 IMPACTS ON AGRICULTURE AND FOOD SYSTEMS OF INDIA
The agricultural industry has played a crucial role in alleviating poverty, rising wages, and ensuring food security for the poor. According to the World Bank, under a pre-COVID-19 scenario, 80 percent of the world's needy people are in underdeveloped regions depending upon agriculture. The sector, which once accounted for 4% of global GDP, is now under stress due to the COVID-19 pandemic, which has created concerns about price differences in agricultural commodities trade and distribution, a fragmented supply chain and a shortage of logistical services, negative impact on farmer health, a shortage of workforce to carry out operations, and growing operating costs for complying with regulations. The current study presented the scenario of agricultural sector after COVID-19 outbreak. It also suggested some strategies to deal with the current situation. The three-week lockdown in India coincided with the harvesting of rabi crops like wheat, mustard, pulses, and others. Farmers lacked labour for harvesting due to migration to their homelands, lacked sufficient logistical support to market their product, and government minimum support price operations were lagging. The Indian agricultural sector's activities have been interrupted both before and after harvest.
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