India is planning to launch the Millet International Initiative for Research and Awareness (MIIRA) to promote the production and consumption of millets on a global scale. This initiative is in line with the UN’s declaration of 2023 as the International Year of Millets and India’s aim to become a global hub for millets. MIIRA will coordinate international millet research programmes and support research on millet crops. India will provide the initial funding, and other G20 countries will contribute to the budget. This article will explore the benefits of millets and the importance of this initiative in promoting them globally.
Millets are a group of small-seeded grasses that are grown around the world, especially in developing countries. They are high in protein, fiber, and other essential nutrients, making them an excellent food source. Millets are also drought-resistant and require less water to grow, making them a sustainable crop. Millets are gluten-free and are an excellent alternative to wheat and rice for those with gluten intolerance. In addition, millets have a low glycemic index, which means that they release sugar slowly and help maintain healthy blood sugar levels.
India has a long history of growing and consuming millets. They have been an integral part of Indian cuisine for thousands of years. However, with the introduction of modern agriculture and urbanization, the consumption of millets has decreased. To promote millets’ consumption and production, the Indian government has taken several initiatives. They have included millets in the Public Distribution System, making them available to people at affordable prices. They have also launched the ‘Millet Mission’ to increase millet production and support millet farmers.
MIIRA is a global initiative that will coordinate international millet research programs and support research on millet crops. This initiative will help promote the consumption and production of millets globally. MIIRA will raise awareness of the benefits of millets and encourage their consumption. It will also provide a platform for knowledge sharing and collaboration among researchers, policymakers, and other stakeholders. India will provide the initial funding for this initiative, and other G20 countries will contribute to the budget. The initiative will be proposed during India’s G20 Presidency in 2023.
MIIRA has several benefits, including: