Minimum Support Price Scheme
MFP contributes to livelihoods and alleviating poverty of nearly 100 million people. Ensuring fair returns to these poor people is duty of the State. The people who depend on MFP are also beset with a number of other problems such as perishable nature of the produce, lack of holding capacity, lack of marketing infrastructure, exploitation by middlemen, lack of Government intervention at the required time and scale, volatile nature of markets etc. Consequently, the MFP gatherers who are mostly poor are unable to bargain for fair prices. Government . of India has taken a number of initiatives for socio economic development of tribals and recognizing the critical importance which MFP hold for tribals and its potential to create large scale employment opportunities thereby helping in reducing poverty and increasing empowerment of tribals particularly women and poor people in backward districts of the country, Govt. of India has decided to introduce the scheme of “Mechanism for Marketing of Minor Forest Produce (MFP) through Minimum Support Price (MSP) and development of value chain”. The scheme is designed as a social safety net for improvement of livelihood of MFP gatherers by providing them fair price for the MFPs they collect.
The scheme has been started with following objectives
- To provide fair price to the MFP gatherers for the produce collected by them and enhance their income level
- To ensure sustainable harvesting of MFPs.
- The Scheme will have a huge social dividend for MFP gatherers, majority of whom are tribals.
It is a holistic scheme for development of MFP trade including its value chain and necessary infrastructure at local level. The MSP scheme seeks to establish a framework to ensure fair returns for the produce collected by tribals, assurance of buying at a particular price, primary processing, storage, transportation etc while ensuring sustainability of the resource base.