Millet farmer of Sangrur strikes gold in the export business.

Dilpreet Singh, a farmer in Sangrur, used to go from pillar to post to sell his millets. Local shops turned him down. Now, however, a profitable foreign market has suddenly opened up for him. It all happened when Singh was looking for marketing opportunities for his millet online. He found the website of APEDA, the Centre’s agricultural export agency. With that, he obtained an export license and completed other formalities such as fumigation to send the first shipment to Australia. It turned out to be a golden deal for Singh, who sold a million at more than seven times what other exporters get on average.

“I have already received $35,000 and will soon receive the rest,” Singh told Businessline. grows millet on 14 hectares of land and says he makes sure it is not mixed with any other grain and that the entire crop is chemical-free. Singh also believes in meeting the importing country’s strict conditions of delivering products to Australian customs within 21 days of fumigation in India. APEDA President Abhishek Dev on January 31 marked the first export shipment of 14.93 tonnes of millet and millet atta worth approximately $45,000. “It is heartening to know that our farmer is exporting a million from Punjab to Australia. Dev said. Sydney importer Jasvir Singh, who joined the virtual flag ceremony, expressed confidence in importing such consignments in the future as the Sangrur farmer has complete control over the value chain.

Dilpreet Singh grows millet in his own farms and also does his own unit both initial and post-processing including packing. The first shipment contained different types of millets – Millet, Cod, Foxtail, Little, Browntop, Barnyard, Ragi, Bajra and Jowar – in both, grain and flour are formed. Narrating his journey, Singh said that when he first packed his produce in a 500-gram packet and took it to a local shop, the shopkeeper refused to buy and advised him to sell in bulk at the mandi. Singh hesitated and pressed on. “I started looking for export possibilities. As diaspora people usually help and I knew the current buyer before, I contacted him and he was interested in my products,” Singh said.

India exported 95,373 tonnes of millet worth $45.46 million (₹375.71 billion) during the current fiscal period from April to November. In 2022-23, 169,049 tonnes of millet were exported, valued at $75.45 million (Rs 608.12 billion). APEDA has helped around 500 start-ups to market and export mille-based value-added products.

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