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Millets on the menu for G20 leaders

From dishes by celebrity chefs to food exhibitions by women farmers, the Indian Agricultural Research Institute (IARI) will organise a feast with millets for G20 leaders

Laddoos made with amaranth.
Laddoos made with amaranth. (Istockphoto)

The 18th G20 summit will take place in New Delhi this weekend, on September 9-10. As the D-day approaches, preparations are underway. The capital city will welcome world leaders, like US President Joe Biden, French President Emmanuel Macron, UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak, Japanese PM Fumio Kishida and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. Their spouses will accompany them too.

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They are due to visit the massive campus of Indian Agricultural Research Institute (IARI) in Pusa. A story published by Press Trust of India (PTI) on Sunday reported, “A curated tour of the 1,200-acre Pusa-IARI campus, the cradle of the green revolution in India, has been organised on September 9 for the first ladies and spouses of the leaders attending the G20 Summit to help them learn about India's rich agricultural heritage and taste a millet-based feast prepared by renowned celebrity chefs.”

It isn’t surprising that millets are key to the menu in every way for visiting world leaders. After all, it is the International Year of Millets (IYM), and it was an initiative by India presented at the United Nations General Assembly in 2018, to promote the indigenous grains of the country on a global stage. When Prime Minister Narender Modi visited the US in June, the White House welcomed him with a lavish millet-based dinner that had salads, risotto and millet cakes.

It is time to extend that hospitality to world leaders as they visit India for the G20 summit. The tour will have exhibitions by millet farmers, women cultivators, start-ups and food experiences by renowned chefs like Kunal Kapur. The idea is to showcase the diversity of these crops unique to India, and complete the circle of farm-to-plate.

The themes of the exhibits, as per PTI, are Climate Smart Agriculture', 'Innovating the Agriculture Value Chain', 'Revolutionizing Agri-logistics and Supply Chains', 'Quality Assurance for Sustainable Consumption' and 'Millets: Sustaining Health, Empowering Agriculture'.

Also read | North-East goes big on millets

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