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Agriculture Minister Vedum promotes food security

Norwegian Minister for Agriculture and Food, Mr. Trygve S. Vedum, visited Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh 16-17 August to launch ClimaAdapt, a four-year research project that should help South Indian farmers adapt to the consequences of climate change.

“The ClimaAdapt Project has an urgency about it. During my few days in India, farmers have shown me challenges with regards to monsoon, poor harvests and sinking groundwater levels. Food security must be on top of the agenda,” says Agriculture Minister Trygve S. Vedum. Mr. Vedum visited India 16-18 August to launch ClimaAdapt, an Indo-Norwegian research project coordinated by Bioforsk of Norway.

Farm workers planting rice, a crop that is severely affected by climate change.

Farm workers planting rice, a crop that is severely affected by climate change. (Photo: Ragnar Våga Pedersen, Bioforsk)

 

 

“Climate Change causes substantial negative consequences for many food-producing countries all over the world. The Unites States is now experiencing one of their worst drought periods in the last hundred years. I have now travelled the states of Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh, where I have seen the results of water scarcity. World food security is fragile, which leads to unstable and quickly rising food prices. These global challenges require different local solutions in different countries,” the Minister said. 

 Minister Vedum meets farmers of Lakkaram village, Andhra Pradesh.

Minister Vedum meets farmers of Lakkaram village, Andhra Pradesh. (Photo: Norwegian Ministry of Agriculture and Food)

Minister Vedum met with key politicians and organisations at the state level. Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh, Mr. Kiran Kumar Reddy, underscored that agriculture is the most important post on the state budget, and that the government aims to increase production further. Minister of Agriculture of Tamil Nadu, Mr. S. Damodaran, agreed with Minister Vedum that every nation should strive to produce sufficient food for its own population. In Delhi, Minister Vedum met with Mr. Pradeep Mehta of CUTS, farmers from the Haryana-based organisation SCRIA, and Dr. Kiran D. Kokate of the Indian Council for Agricultural Research (ICAR). 

The ClimaAdapt project builds on previous climate research in the water and rice sectors of the two states. Work will be carried out in the field, involving a broad range of stakeholders like scientists, state and local authorities, and farmers and women’s self-help groups. The objective is to help farmers adapt better to climate change, in order to secure the livelihood both for themselves and their wider communities. 

The project is financed by the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, with a budget of 31 million Norwegian Kroner (Rs 27,5 Crore) over 4 years. It is coordinated by Bioforsk, a leading agricultural research institute under the Norwegian Ministry of Agriculture and Food. Indian research partners are Tamil Nadu Agricultural University (TNAU) and M.S. Swaminathan Research Foundation (MSSRF) in Tamil Nadu, and International Water Management Institute (IWMI) and Water and Land Management Training and Research Institute  (WALAMTARI) in Andhra Pradesh.               

Minister Vedum (centre), Andhra Pradesh Minister for Minor Irrigation, T.G. Venkatesh and Norwegian Ambassador to India, Mr Eivind Homme met the press during the project launch in Hyderabad.

 

Minister Vedum (centre), Andhra Pradesh Minister for Minor Irrigation, T.G. Venkatesh and Norwegian Ambassador to India, Mr Eivind Homme met the press during the project launch in Hyderabad. (Photo: Norwegian Ministry of Agriculture and Food)

By: Royal Norwegian Embassy in New Delhi.

 

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