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Superfood Indian millets ready to rock at Moscow food fest

Indian millets cuisine and Basmati Rice sampling got an overwhelming response at the Indian pavilion during the 'Fine Food Australia' festival organised in Sydney this week (Image courtesy: APEDA)

Millets and various Indian food products will feature prominently at the ‘World Food Moscow’ – an international autumn food exhibition that begins in the Russian capital from September 19.

India’s Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority (APEDA) will once again be setting up its pavilion to showcase and market the Indian agricultural and processed food products at the event which is considered to be one of the largest fairs in Russia.

The platform witnesses convergence of food manufacturers, related service providers and buyers from retail, wholesale, catering, as well as food and beverage distributors and exporters from all over the world.

Russia is considered to be one of the important markets for export of agro and processed food products and Indian food
products are already hugely popular, not just amongst the large ethnic population settled in the country but also local communities.

Every year, the World Food Moscow exhibition is visited by more than 20,000 specialists from retail and wholesale trade, the HoReCa (hotel/restaurant/catering segment), as well as distributors and food manufacturers.

APEDA has been participating in the event for many years where tremendous opportunities exist for enhancing bilateral trade, investment, joint ventures and strategic partnerships for Indian food products.

Indian products like basmati rice, groundnuts, gherkins, fresh/dried vegetables, fruits juices and pulp, ready-to-eat food/curries, honey, spices and herbs, chutneys, pickles, organic products and other processed food items have been in a great demand during the past editions of the World Food Moscow.

As part of the International Year of Millets (IYM) 2023 – that has been declared by the United Nations at the behest of the Indian government – the Indian Embassy in Moscow is also organising ‘Millet Food Competition 2023’ in collaboration with Overseas Bihar Association (OBA) on September 23.

Russia, which has joined India-backed global action plan on ensuring the widest possible dissemination of millet growing technology, has seen massive decline in the total sown area of millets from about 2 million hectares in 1991 to 238000 hectares in 2022.

Different varieties of millet are staple foods for more than 500 million people in more than 30 countries. In the total world millet production (30.5 million tones), India is a leader, followed by Nigeria, Niger and China.

India produces nine major varieties of millets and is the largest producer and fifth largest exporter of millets in the world.

The global millet market was valued at $9.95 billion in 2020 and is projected to reach $14.14 billion in 2028, growing at a CAGR of 4.49%.

Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh, Haryana, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh and Telangana are the major producing states of the wonderful crop.