PM to release Rs 75 coin to mark 75th anniversary of FAO

New Delhi:  On the occasion of 75th anniversary of Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) on October 16 this year, Prime Minister Narendra Modi will release a commemorative coin of Rs 75 denomination to mark the long-standing relation of India with FAO.

The Prime Minister will also dedicate to the nation 17 recently developed biofortified varieties of 8 crops.

“The event marks the highest priority accorded by the government to agriculture and nutrition, and is a testament of the resolve to completely eliminate hunger, undernourishment and malnutrition,” said a statement from the Prime Ministers Office (PMO).

“It will be witnessed by Anganwadis, Krishi Vigyan Kendras, Organic and Horticulture Missions across the country.”

Union Agriculture Minister, Finance Minister and WCD Minister will also be present on the occasion.

India has had a historic association with FAO. Indian Civil Service Officer Dr Binay Ranjan Sen was the Director General of FAO during 1956-1967. The World Food Programme, which has won the Nobel Peace Prize 2020, was established during his time. India’s proposals for the International Year of Pulses in 2016 and the International Year of Millets 2023 have also been endorsed by FAO.

Explaining about the 17 recently developed biofortified varieties of 8 crops to be dedicated to the nation by the Prime Minister, the statement said it will have up to 3.0-fold increase in nutritional value.

The rice variety CR Dhan 315 has high zinc; wheat variety HI 1633 rich in protein, iron and zinc, HD 3298 rich in protein and iron and DBW 303 and DDW 48 rich in protein in wheat; Ladhowal Quality Protein Maize Hybrid 1, 2 and 3 rich in lysine and tryptophan; CFMV1 and 2 of finger millet rich in calcium, iron and zinc; CLMV1 of little Millet rich in iron and zinc; Pusa Mustard 32 with low erucic acid; Girnar 4 and 5 of groundnut with enhanced oleic acid and yam variety Sri Neelima and DA 340 with enhanced zinc, iron and anthocyanin content.

These varieties, along with other food ingredients, will transform the normal Indian thali into nutri-thali, the PMO statement said.

The production of bio-fortified crop varieties will be upscaled and linked with government programmes of mid-day meal and Anganwadi to reduce malnutrition and make India Kuposhan Mukta through naturally enriched food ingredients, it said, adding this will also usher in higher income of farmers and will open new avenues of entrepreneurship development.