India has emerged from the global financial crisis registering an estimated GDP growth of 8.6 per cent in 2010–11. Following a severe drought in 2009 agricultural growth bounced back to 5.4 per cent in 2010–11. Inter-state variations in agricultural performance – Gujarat is a front runner – can be explained by differences in investments in infrastructure, irrigation, R&D etc. There is potential to improve performance sustainably, keeping in view increasing stress on water resources and other environmental issues. More than 52 per cent of the workforce depends on agriculture, which accounts for 17 per cent of GDP. Per capita food expenditure averages more than 50 per cent of total expenditure. Overall income growth is triggering a shift in consumption from cereals to high-value commodities. To meet demand shifts, India can either increase domestic production and/or participate more in world markets. The Indian agri-food system is being transformed: farming is becoming integrated with input supplies, warehouse/logistics, processing and retailing, and the entire value chain is being streamlined. This is stimulating increased trade and investment opportunities in India. EU Member States may find opportunities in niche markets e.g. cheese, wine, olive oil, which are still in their infancy, or to invest in food technology, irrigation, farm management practices (especially dairy) or the development of sustainable value chains
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