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Union government highlights meals with millets to sustain daily dose of micronutrient content
Tuesday, 31 January, 2023, 16 : 00 PM [IST]
Our Bureau, Bengaluru
Union government highlights meals with  millets to sustain daily dose of  micronutrient content. Millet is a whole grain and the cereal crop is nutritionally superior to wheat and rice due to its higher protein levels and a more balanced amino acid profile.

Millets include jowar (sorghum), ragi (finger millet), kodo (kodo millet), kutki (little-millet), kakun (foxtail -  millet), sanwa (barnyard- millet), cheena (proso millet), kuttu (buckwheat) and chaulai (amaranth).

Millets are rich in essential vitamins, minerals, protein and fibre, and the lesser known fact is that all the dishes made from rice and wheat can also be made from millets, said Union Minister of State (Independent Charge) Science & Technology; Minister of State (Independent Charge) Earth Sciences; MoS PMO, Personnel, Public Grievances, Pensions, Atomic Energy and Space, Dr Jitendra Singh, who is also a known Diabetologist and a medical professional.

Delivering the keynote address at an exclusive event titled “CSIR innovations on Millets” commemorating the International Year of Millets here today, Dr  Singh said, after Prime Minister Narendra Modi popularised Yoga globally, it's now time to do so for Millets. He said, 10 of the 12 known types of millets are grown in India, which consist of complex carbohydrates, slow to digest and hence low glycemic index beneficial for blood sugar levels.

Spearheaded by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, the United Nations declared 2023 as the “International Year of Millets” at the initiative of the Indian Government last year and was backed by 72 other countries, the Minister informed.

Dr Singh also inaugurated the Exhibition and released the Desktop Calendar 2023 on Millets at CSIR-NPL as part of the Celebrations of “International Year of Millets-2023” by CSIR Labs. The Exhibition had a display of products and technologies developed in CSIR-CFTRI and also other CSIR labs.

The  Government’s initiatives are going to revive consumption of millets, not just in India, but globally and increase the farmers’ income. CSIR-CFTRI, Mysuru is developing technologies and machineries for processing, value added products from millets and also in the area of skill development. Millets are drought-resistant, with lower water requirements, and can be cultivated on poor soils and in hilly terrain and therefore could be produced and promoted in almost all geographical terrains.

Dr Sridevi Annapurna Singh, Director, CSIR-CFTRI, presented the key contributions of CSIR in  millet processin with an emphasis on the  contributions of CFTRI, Mysuru, NIIST, Thiruvananthapurm and IHBT, Palampur, the constituent laboratories of CSIR.

 CSIR-CFTRI is organising One Week One Laboratory programme in the second week of June 2023 to highlight CFTRI’s contribution with special emphasis on millets, among other achievements.  This programme is the brainchild of Union Minister of Science and Technology, Dr Jitendra Singh, who is also the Vice-President of CSIR, she said.
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