Center to ensure availability of edible oil at reasonable prices
Center holds meeting with all stakeholders to discuss ways and means to ensure the availability of edible oil at reasonable prices in the countryPhoto - Cargill

Center to ensure availability of edible oil at reasonable prices

States and business must take all possible steps to soften the edible oil prices

Center held a meeting on 24 May 2021 with all stakeholders to discuss ways and means to address the stability of edible oil prices. The objective of the meeting was to coordinate efforts to ensure the availability of edible oils at reasonable prices.

First of its kind meeting, held to discuss ways and means to address the issue of abnormal price increase of edible oil, was attended by the secretary, Department of Food & Public Distribution, Government of India, secretary Ministry of Agriculture, Government of India, and Secretary, Department of Consumer Affairs, Government of India, producers of edible oil seeds, millers, stockists, wholesalers, various associations of the edible oil industry sector, senior officials of states like Gujarat, Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, and Tamil Nadu. The meeting was convened by the Department of Food & Public Distribution, GOI.

Speaking on the occasion, secretary Food & Public Distribution said that it was important to understand the issues that contribute to price rise and discuss the same with all the stakeholders so that appropriate strategies can be formulated to address edible oil prices.

It may be noted that the production and domestic availability of oilseeds in India falls way short of needs domestic demand for edible oil. A significant volume of edible oil is imported each year. Changes in International prices of edible oil make an impact on the domestic Indian price of edible oil.

The need to hold the meeting was also felt because the center got concerned about more than a proportionate rise in edible oil prices in India compared with the increase in international prices of edible oil during the last few months.

Secretary Food & Public Distribution said, "The mission "Atmanirbhar Bharat" requires the country to be self-sufficient in edible oils. The dependency of almost 60% on imports is not appropriate to India's growth of the edible oil industry. There is a need to strike a balance between short-term measures to keep prices.in check and long-term measure of keeping India AtmaNirbhar in Edible oil production."

In the meeting, it was felt that there was indeed a need to strike a balance between measures to keep high prices in check and measures to make India AtmaNirbhar in the area of edible oil production. Secretary said that all the states and stakeholders from the business side must take all possible steps to soften the prices.

He added that suggestions presented in the meeting would help arrive at wholesome solutions to address the stability of edible oil prices and the domestic growth oilseeds sector. He asked the participants to mail the suggestions, and other inputs as the center make efforts to ensure the availability of edible oils at reasonable prices.

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