Maize is the second most important cereal crop in the world in terms of acreage and is called the ‘Queen of Cereals’. Maize accounts for the major share of the coarse grain production; showing a steady upward trend over the last decade on growing demand (poultry feed and industrial use) and increasing productivity (better hybrid seeds). Increasing adoption of improved hybrids, particularly single cross hybrids, has encouraged farmers to bring more area under Maize cultivation. Consequently, area under Maize has gone up with 3 percent CAGR from 6.6 million hectares in FY 2000 - 01 to a record 10.2 million hectares in FY 2016 - 17. In addition to acreage expansion, Supply - Demand pattern and overall value chain in Maize sector has also evolved over last few years.
During FY 2016 –17, Maize consumption has increased by 2 percent over previous year to 24 Mn MT. It includes 13.5 Mn MT for poultry feed, 1.8 Mn MT for starch, 1.2 Mn MT for ethanol, and balance for food, seed and other uses. Maize value chain spans through an inter-dependent input companies, farmers, traders, processors and retailers, all of whom must ultimately satisfy the varying demands of the consumer in a sustainable manner. A closer look at the maize value chain, reveals that both backward and forward linkages have evolved over last few years and the value chain has witnessed technological interventions in multiple facets. The backward linkages comprise of seed, farm machineries, crop care chemicals and other farm inputs, whereas front end encompasses storage and post-harvest management (PHM), procurement, storage, processing and marketing activities.
With growing opportunities across value chain, sector faces multiple challenges too. Limited adoption of modern technologies in farm input system, high post-harvest losses, limitation in transfer of technology, poor market access; limited value addition and infrastructure development have been identified as few of these challenges.
With the above perspective under consideration FICCI is organizing the “5th India Maize Summit 2018”. India Maize Summit aims at providing a common platform to all stakeholders to outline the opportunities in maize and deliberate on actions that are required at the policy and operational level to unleash the potential of Maize.