Jul. 4, 2016
Author: Bhupen Dubey
Global CEO, Advanta Seeds Advanta Seeds (A UPL Company)
Indian Seed Industry: Glimpse
Global seed industry is estimated at USD 45 billion (ISF, 2013) and Indian seed industry is ranked 5th
in the world in value terms accounting USD 2.2 Billion (5%) with major growth from Cotton, Rice and Vegetable seeds. India with 48% of its land being arable and its population employment under agriculture being 55% clearly reflects the agriculture sector to be the mainstay of Indian Economy (ICRA,2015).
Source: Agriculture Statistics at a Glance, 2014;
Food and Agriculture Organisation on United States
Vegetable seed Industry:
The value of global vegetable seed market is estimated to be at USD 6.75 Billion (ISF, 2012). Globally the vegetable seed market is expected to grow @ 7-8% per annum. Asian Vegetable seed market is the largest, China & India being the major players contributing 48% market share globally. India & China together contributes about 50% vegetable production but seeds are imported by European nations. Top Vegetable seed exporter in terms of Value is Netherlands followed by US, France, China, Chile. India's contribution in export is only about 1% globally in terms of Value.
Statistics for Seed Exports:
India ranks 26th globally with annual seed export of USD 138 Million including field crops around USD 71 million and vegetable crops around USD 68 million. Vegetable crops seed are mainly exported to Asia-
Pacific (about 57%), Europe (23%) and North America (12%). About 8% of the total vegetable seed export goes to Africa (APEDA,2013).
Indian Vegetable seed demand in International Markets:
Demand for Indian Vegetable seeds is growing strongly in many of the international markets mostly for Solanacious vegetable crops. Tomato seeds is the highest exported vegetable seed from India
accounted to USD 11.58 mio in 2013 majorly to Netherlands, USA, Thailand. Okra, Hot-pepper, Radish (USD 0.38 mio), Cabbage (USD 1.01 mio) is mostly imported by Pakistan, Bangladesh etc . India
exported Melons worth USD 0.81 mio in 2013 mainly to USA followed by Netherlands, Southeast Asia and Africa. (APEDA, DGCIS-Annual report)
India's favorable and diverse Agro Climatic Zones adds to the potential for Production and export of wide range of vegetable seeds. India owing to its established seed production systems, large no. of seed producing companies, pool of trained seed growers can be a great hub for seed export. India exports a wide range of tropical/subtropical vegetable crops seeds to various international markets.
Process of Seed Export:
The exporter has to approach APEDA, The Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority which was established by the Government of India under the Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority Act. This is the nodal agency for guiding the exports about the procedure and also gives information about the markets to which the products has to be exported. They also have subsidy schemes for exporting quality produce to different countries.
Agriculture export in general comes under 2 acts namely,
• Plants, Fruit and Seeds act which regulates the exports and
• Seed Act & Seed control order which regulates all seed business (Domestic & Exports).
To start seed business, exporter has to take a seed license under the Seed (Control) order from the State DOA. The order confers power to the central government to control, regulate the supply and distribution of essential commodities. The exporter need to apply to RBI for allotment for export import code after which only export business can be started.
For export of vegetable seeds to different countries, exporter needs to check from the respective country's Agriculture department for the seed being cleared for Pest risk analysis. After getting a clearance on the Pest risk analysis, on application of the importer, the local Agriculture department will issue an import Permit. Import permit (IP) will have all the specification of imports to the country which includes the description of crop name, variety name and quantity and the quarantine requirement for imports of that particular seed in the country. The importer sends the copy of IP to the exporting business partner. On receipt of IP, Exporter has to approach the local Plant quarantine Department which comes under ministry of Agriculture for issuance of Phytosanitary certificate. This certificate stipulates that the seed being exported is free from Pest and diseases. In some countries, apart from the regular Phytosanitary certificate, importer insists the exporting country to test for specific pest and disease which is called Additional Declaration in the main Phytosanitary certificate. This certificate is issued only after testing of the seeds sample to be exported and in some cases the fields of Production too which is knows as Field inspection certification.
Most of the companies accept consignment based on ISTA test results for quality confirmation which is done by exporting company before the shipment. The exporter then has to file a shipping bill, Invoice copy and Packing List with the custom authorities along with the copy of phytosanitary certificate and an affidavit informing that the seed being exported are not of breeder, foundation or wild variety. The custom department on inspecting the documents, allow the exporter to export the shipment. The commercial transactions change from customer to customer depending upon exporter's negotiation and demand supply position.