Farmers can now directly sell their produce to organized retailers such as wallmart instead of going through the yards of agricultural produce market committees during the Covid-19 lockdown.

Consumer affairs secretary released the statement according to which the farmers will be able to sell their produce directly to the retailers as several mandis will remain shut down. Even though mandis are allowed to operate during the lockdown, several states have shut them making it difficult to procure essential commodities. It is also difficult to maintain social distancing at crowded APMC yards.

Many states such as West Bengal, Karnataka, Maharashtara alredy allow cash and carry retailers to buy directly from farmers under the APMC Act, but some such as Uttar Pradesh don’t permit the same. In such states farmers sell through mandis.

Metro Cash & Carry India managing director Arvind Mediratta said that this direct procurement makes fruits and vegetables readily available to people especially during the current outbreak like situations.

For Karnataka, Maharashtra, West Bengal and Telangana, the company follows a mixed model of procurement wherein a major percentage of the produce is sourced directly from its collection centres, he said. “For Andhra Pradesh, Punjab, Delhi, Gujarat, MP, Uttar Pradesh and Rajasthan, we directly source from the local wholesale markets. In some cases, for certain key items, basis the volume, we source from farmers directly,” he added.

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