Conducting baseline survey to evolve methodology for fixation of Minimum Support Price for selected Minor Forest Produce
The forest dwelling communities in India have been legally endowed with ownership and governance of minor forest produce (MFP) through two seminal legislations of Government of India, namely PESA, 1996 and Forest Rights Act, 2006, which gives the “right of ownership, access to collect, use and dispose of minor forest produce which has been traditionally collected within or outside village boundaries”. Minor Forest Produce forms the largest unorganized sector, often leading to unsustainable harvesting of these forest products. Despite this, the communities remain largely deprived and impoverished.
TERI's research against this background has helped to set up a methodology to determine the Minimum Support Price of 12 identified products, such as tamarind, honey, mahua seeds and tendu leaves, which will enhance the income of produce collectors. Owing to the large domestic and international demand for MFPs, there is tremendous potential to create large-scale employment opportunities for rural people, especially women, and help reduce poverty and empower communities. Addressing key aspects in the MFP value chain - some of these are listed below - would help create employment opportunities for the communities:
- Value addition of the MFP collected
- Setting up procurement units at haat bazaars in the villages