Organics & Millets 2018 International Trade Fair is scheduled to happen from January 19 – 21, 2018 at Palace Grounds, Bengaluru.
To promote the event, Karnataka’s Honorable Minister of Agriculture, Shri Krishna Byre Gowda, visited and interacted with us bloggers and journalists at Prems Grama Bhojanam, Adyar, Chennai. A few glimpses from that event is embedded in the below slideshow –
The 3-day expo prominently features organic foods & processing, organic textiles, organic dairy and animal products, Millets and processed millet products, certification bodies, processing and packaging technology/machinery, etc.
Visitor profile includes farmers, vendors & businesses, consumers, Government and everyone else who wants to switch over to healthier foods or help others do so through their businesses.
Why you should opt for millets over rice/wheat –
- Highly nutritious
- Low glycemic index
- Grows well with minimum water as rain-fed crops, reducing the consequences of water scarcity and carbon emissions.
- Requires minimal soil fertility hence avoiding harmful chemical pesticides and manures to a great extent.
- Some millets can be harvested and be re-grown multiple times in the same year, increasing profits.
- Cost required to produce millets, and hence the selling price, is lesser.
On the day of the promo meet at Prems Grama Bhojanam, Adyar — which is an eatery that serves millet-based cooked food in Chennai — we discussed on how all agriculture was organic even a few decades back, how businesses and foreign Governments promoted chemicals, how those chemicals affect people’s health, why organic and millet foods are beneficial, what are the issues hindering the adoption of millets, and other topics.
- It seems there are entire villages, even in Tamil Nadu where people primarily eat millets, and rice is only a festival food.
- Eating just one type of food is not advisable and millets bring a balance in the nutrition.
- Millets are healthier and easier to digest.
- Although the cost of millets is higher now, mass consumption and hence mass production can bring down costs drastically.
- Lack of trust in a few organic shops — with or without certifications — is a hurdle that we need to tolerate and cross together in the initial stages.
- More eateries and cooking shows ought to be organized to make public acquainted with millet-based foods, which are very similar to the regular rice/wheat foods that we eat.
Personally, I switched from rice to kambu (bajra) about 4 years back and have reduced at least 15% of my weight just because of that one change. I need much less bajra per serving and it is very light on the stomach. Overall my health has been better since that change.
Hence, I suggest others also to try millets. Even if you don’t want to switch over to millets right away, try to eat millet-based food occasionally – like once or twice every week. Govt. of Karnataka has even released an entire recipe book featuring millet foods.