Give fillip to agro marketing

Since Nepal is predominantly an agricultural country, its highest percentage of the total population relies on agriculture for their livelihood. Despite strenuous efforts in the past few decades, the agricultural sector has failed to yield as positive results as expected. Production has been falling.

Several factors are working here. Nepali farmers have been facing some agricultural related problems for many years. Agricultural marketing is the crux of the problem. It would be futile to boost agricultural production and put up optimum standard of nutrition unless there is a proper means to find markets for the produce. Even

if the markets are identified, transportation should be upgraded for the smooth supply—from the producers to consumers.

Generally, Nepali farmers are rural people, who face difficulties even to subsist; most of them cannot keep their agricultural production in their respective houses for a long time because of poverty. Lack warehouses, perishable nature of their agricultural products and no regulated markets mean farmers face hurdles round the year.

These products pass through many channels. Such trend persists still today but the concerned authorities have failed to pay attention to this fact. This results in problems for both the producers and consumers.

The marketing of the farmers’ products is influenced by the kind of quality of seeds used for crop production. Therefore, it is obvious that the marketing of seeds should be linked to overall marketing processes. Government policies in connection with agricultural inputs in general and seeds in particular can have a major impact on the success of a seed marketing venture. For this, the government should take this fact into account.

For sustainable agricultural marketing, efforts should be made to make long-term strategic plans for agriculture-based industries so that farmers can play a significant role in the operation of such industries. Moreover, policy-makers need to examine carefully what exists in the recent marketing trend so as to help farmers derive more benefits through farming.

Agriculture has remained the country’s principal economic activity, employing over 60 per cent of population. However, contribution of the agriculture sector to the national GDP has been declining every year since 2010-11.