New Delhi, Sep 2 (IANS) India is at the fore of coconut production and ranks third in the world with the production of coconut in the country at 21,207 million nuts during 2020-21, Union Minister of Agriculture and Farmers' Welfare, Narendra Singh Tomar, said on Thursday."India has made great progress in the field of coconut. This production of 21,207 million nuts is 34 per cent of the global production. The productivity is 9,687 nuts per hectare, which is the highest in the world. New coconut products and industries are growing, due to which farmers are getting employment," Tomar said while addressing an event to mark World Coconut Day on Thursday.The Agriculture Ministry celebrated World Coconut Day to commemorate the foundation day of the International Coconut Community (ICC), an intergovernmental organisation of coconut-producing countries under the aegis of the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (UN-ESCAP), a release from the ministry said.The theme for the 23rd World Coconut Day celebrations this year is "Building a safe, inclusive resilient and sustainable coconut community amid Covid-19 pandemic and beyond".Tomar said that coconut has had a strong impact on the country's economy and urged the farmers and entrepreneurs to take full advantage of the potential of the coconut sector."The Centre stands with the farmers in their efforts. By increasing the agriculture budget significantly, the benefit of MSP is being given to the farmers. The Prime Minister is always thinking in the direction of increasing farmers' income," Tomar said, adding, "Agricultural produce should be of quality and as per global standards, which will also increase exports."Union Minister of State for Agriculture and Farmers' Welfare, Shobha Karandlaje, said, "Since the farmers are small and marginal, the future of our domestic coconut industry lies in our ability to aggregate and pool farm level coconut production, take up processing and value addition for better income realisation and give major thrust to product diversification and finding industrial utilisation of various by-products and their value addition."
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