New Delhi – Negotiations have started with the United Arab Emirates to conclude a “mutual recognition agreement” for the export of organic products from India, the Ministry of Trade and Industry said here.

India is currently exporting its organic products transparently to 58 countries. Among the export markets listed by the department are Australia, Canada, the European Union, Israel, the United Kingdom, the United States, Switzerland and South Korea.

A mutual recognition agreement will allow India to streamline the export of organic products to the United Arab Emirates.

Dr M Angamuthu, chairman of the Agricultural and Processed Food Export Development Authority (APEDA), said Indian organic products, nutraceuticals and health foods are increasingly in demand abroad. The coronavirus pandemic has created greater awareness around the world about the benefits of these products.

APEDA is an agency under the Indian Ministry of Trade and Industry which facilitates the export of programmed products through promotional activities. These include the organization of international buyer-seller meetings, the participation of exporters in trade events in importing countries and product promotion programs tailored to specific markets.

In the Gulf, a series of virtual buyer-sellers are meeting with potential importers in the United Arab Emirates and Kuwait for processed Indian agriculture and food products that have replaced physical trade missions since the onset of COVID-19.

India’s exports of organic food products increased 51% in value to $ 1,040 million in fiscal year 2020-21 from the previous year, the Commerce Ministry said. “Biologics growth has been achieved despite the logistical and operational challenges posed by the COVID19 pandemic,” he said.

Organic products are currently only exported from India if they are produced, processed, packaged and labeled in accordance with the requirements of a National Organic Production Program (NPOP), overseen by APEDA The NPOP certification has been recognized by several country, eliminating the need for additional attestation. A mutual recognition agreement will facilitate this process. Organic products covered by the bilateral agreement with the NPOP label do not need to be recertified for import from the United Arab Emirates to India.

© WAM (UAE News Agency) 2021

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