Agriculture is the backbone of Indian Economy. About 65% of Indian population depends directly on agriculture and it accounts for around 22% of GDP. Agriculture derives its
importance from the fact that it has vital supply and demand links with the manufacturing sector. During the past five years agriculture sector has witnessed spectacular advances in
the production and productivity of food grains, oilseeds, commercial crops, fruits, vegetables, food grains, poultry and dairy. India has emerged as the second largest producer of fruits and vegetables in the world in addition to being the largest overseas exporter of cashews and spices. Further, India is the highest producer of milk in the world.
India has Monsoon climate in which a year has been divided into two distinct seasons of summer and winter. Rainfall occurs mainly in summer.
Weather Forecasting System:
India has a strong weather forecasting system developed and maintained by Indian Meteorological Department (IMD). Apart from weather forecasting and severe weather
warning, it also gives agro meteorological services to farmers in India.
Agro Climatic Zones:
India has diverse agro-climatic zones from north to south and from east to west. It has been divided into fifteen different agro-climatic zones, which signifies its diversified
agricultural production from tropical to temperate crops.
Rice, Wheat, Sugarcane, Oilseeds, Pulses, Cotton, Jowar, Bajra, Ragi, Tea, Coffee, Coconut, Cashew, Rubber, Spices, Cauliflower, Onion, Cabbage, Mango, Banana, Sapota, Acid lime.
Indian Agriculture is characterized by small and marginal operational holdings. About 85% of total cultivated land has been fragmented into less than 10-hectare land. About 60% of
farmland is less than 4 hectare in size.
Tea, Coffee, and Natural rubber are the main plantation crops in India that contribute in Indian export to a considerable extent. India is the largest producer and consumer of tea in
the world. It contributes 4% to global coffee production and enjoys a niche market by producing both arabica and robusta coffee. In rubber also, it ranks third in production and
fourth in consumption of natural rubber in the world.
India has a great potential in the production of horticultural crops, which includes fruits, vegetables, spices, floriculture, and plantations. Acreage under horticulture is around 20
million hectares. India is the second largest producer of both fruits and vegetables in the world. It occupies first position in the production of cauliflower, second in onion, and third in
Dairy: India ranks first in the world in milk production, which was around 100 million tones in 2006-07.Strong networks of Milk Cooperatives, have been instrumental in this
phenomenal performance of dairy sector in India. Presently, 1.13 lakh village level cooperative societies spread over 265 districts in the country form part of the national Milk
Grid. This Grid links milk producers throughout India and consumers in 700 towns and cities. De-licensing of dairy sector in 1991 has directed considerable amount of private
funds both from inside and outside country in this sector especially in manufacturing facilities while investment in cooperative sector are concentrated largely in procurement and
processing of milk.
Livestock: Livestock sector contributes about 27% of the G.D.P. from agriculture and allied activities. This sector has excellent forward and backward linkages, which p-promote many industries and increase the incomes of vulnerable groups of the society such as agricultural labourers and small and marginal farmers. India possesses the second largest livestock population in the world. Production and export of poultry products have shown considerable growth in the recent decades. Export of such products to countries including Bangladesh, Srilanka, Middle East, Japan, Denmark, USA, and Angola augers well for this industry.
Fishery: Fishing, aquaculture and a host of allied activities are a source of livelihood to over 14 million people and a major source of foreign exchange earner. In 2005-06, this sector
contributed about 1% of G.D.P. and 5.3% of G.D.P from agricultural sector.8,118 k.m. of coastline gives geographical basis for the development of marine fishery sector and cultural
factor boosts the inland fishery sector in India.