The Union Minister of Tribal Affairs, Arjun Munda, reviewed the progress of various schemes and activities being implemented for the empowerment of tribals by TRIFED today. Ministers of State for Tribal Affairs, Renuka Singh, and Shri Bishweswar Tudu, were also present at the review meeting held at the TRIFED office headquarters.On the occasion, the various activities and initiatives under “Sankalp Se Siddhi – Mission Van Dhan” of TRIFED were reviewed by the Ministers. It was noted that TRIFED has been implementing several noteworthy programmes for the empowerment of the tribals. Over the past two years, The ‘Mechanism for Marketing of Minor Forest Produce (MFP) through Minimum Support Price (MSP) & Development of Value Chain for MFP’ has impacted the tribal ecosystem in a major way. Under the MSP for MFP scheme, cumulative procurement of Rs.1841.74 Cr has been made by States i.e. Rs.321.02 Cr using GOI funds and Rs.1520.72 Cr using State funds in last two years including Rs.821.48 Cr during the current financial year. This has helped in ensuring fair and remunerative prices to tribal gatherers for their produces and also raising market procurement at prices above MSP announced by the Government. Started in 2013-14 with 10 Minor Forest Produce items covering 9 States impacting approximately 1 Lakhs tribal families the scheme is now expanded to 22 States covering 87 MFP items impacting 25 lakhs families.
Total procurement has gone up from Rs. 30 crores in 2014-15 to Rs. 1870 crores in 2020-21. A phenomenal increase in value of procurement by private trade has also been reported.Shri Munda said, “It is noteworthy that TRIFED has been consistently bringing out new initiatives that take care of all aspects of tribal empowerment. Through this innovative connect programme, now information dissemination can happen both ways and lead to further development of initiatives and help our tribal brethren. ”Van Dhan introduced as “Tribal Start Ups” for value addition, branding, packing and marketing of Forest and other tribal produces through tribal gatherers. As per TRIFED, under Van DhanYojana, establishment of 37,872 VDVKs have been sanctioned against the Sankalp Patra target of 50,000 VDVKs in Tribal area, which are subsumed into 2274 VDVK Clusters directly benefitting 6.76 Lakh beneficiaries/ Around 1200 VDVK Clusters are operational. The target of setting up of 50,000 VDVKs incorporating 10 Lakh tribal entrepreneurs has to be completed by 30th July 2021.Under Retail Marketing, a total number of 140 Tribes India Outlets have been opened till date that have made a total sale of Rs.55.43 Cr.Besides, two TRIFOOD Projects at Jagdalpur and Raigarh (Maharashtra) are being shortly commissioned for undertaking value-addition of various forest products being procured by beneficiaries of Van DhanKendras. Each of these mega-food parks will scale up value addition, marketing, packaging and branding operation as a professionally managed manufacturing and production hub and will directly provide livelihood to more than 10,000 tribal families. These projects are being set up in collaboration with Ministry of Food Processing Industries.