Organized marketing for the development of agricultural production and trade is known as agriculture marketing. Success in agriculture can be achieved by developing agriculture marketing. Adequate marketing facilities encourage farmers to produce more.
Importance of Agriculture Marketing:
1. Optimum use of input and output: Agricultural marketing facility leads to optimum use of the available output of the agricultural sector and inputs required for the sector. An efficient marketing system can contribute towards increasing the market surplus and correcting the problems of inefficient processing, storage, transportation, and sale.
2. A higher level of Income: A good marketing system ensures a higher level of income for the farmers by removing the middle man. They charge high rates of commission for marketing services and engage in mal-practices in marketing farm products. An efficient marketing system guarantees the farmers better prices for farm products.
3. Widens the market: A well-made marketing system is capable of reaching products from remote corners of the country to various urban centers and thereby widens the market for those products.
4. Help in overall development: An improved marketing system promotes overall development process by stimulating the growth of a number of agro-based industries. The marketing centers can function as a growth nucleus by opening up various profitable opportunities.
5. Provide a price signal: An efficient marketing system indicates a growing demand for agricultural products through price signals. This helps the farmers to plan their production in accordance with the needs of the country.
6. Source of knowledge: A marketing system can become a direct source of new technical knowledge and induce the farmers to adopt the up to date scientific method of cultivation.
7. Increase in utility: A marketing system helps to increase the utility of agriculture by providing location, time and situation utility to a product. This also satisfies the consumer’s taste.
Nature/Feature of Agriculture Marketing:
1. Lack of national market: It is necessary to make the national market broad in order to make domestic market broad. The country as a whole should be integrated into a single market. But, due to geographical structure and lack of transport in Nepal, the goods of one place rarely reach another place.
2. Lack of infrastructure: The means of transport and communication are not well developed in the country. Even the available means of transport and communication have not been able to provide enough and appropriate services. There is no uniformity in measurement. There is no system of grading and testing grains.
3. Loss in distribution: There is loss in large quantity due to the lack of modernization in moving grains. The internal channel of agriculture trade is four types:
b) Whole seller/Agent/Dealer
d) Final Consumer
Some quantities of goods are loosed during distribution through these channels.
4. Lack of marketing: Marketing is a device to guarantee reasonable returns to the farmers. It helps to increase investment and production. But there is no agricultural marketing the system in Nepal.
Problems of Agriculture marketing:
1. The difficulty of transport and communication: Thus, the biggest obstacle in Nepalese marketing system is the lack of adequate transport and communication facility. This increases the marketing cost. The proper functioning of the marketing system needs efficient infrastructures.
2. Lack of storage facility: The farmers have to sell their products immediately after harvesting due to lack of proper storage facility. The existing storage facilities are also defective. Insects and pets destroy a significant amount of grains.
3. Lack of adequate institutional credit: Most of the farmers live below the poverty line. It is difficult for them to operate farming due to lack of funds. The institutional credit facility is still not available in rural areas to support farmers.
4. Presence of middle man: Most of the farmers sell their products in local markets. The commodities are supplied to the consumers by the middle man. The profit is shared between middlemen. Due to this, the consumers have to pay high price and producers do not get reasonable returns.
5. Lack of grading facility: The better quality products fetch a high price. The farmers are unaware of this. The grading and standardization of agricultural products is almost nil in the country.
6. Adulteration: The mixing of the inferior type of some commodity or foreign materials is called adulteration. For e.g. mixing of sand and pebbles with food grain, water with milk, mineral oil in edible oil, common salt with fertilizes. The adulteration is generally done by middlemen rather than the producers.
a) Lack of effective organization.
b) Non- uniformity of weights and measurement.
c) Credit and Marketing tide.
Remedial/solution measure of Agriculture Marketing:
1. Transport and communication facility: The transport and communication facilities should be extended to the rural and remote areas. These facilities help the farmers to get a reasonable price of their products.
2. Grading and standardization: This protects the interest of consumers through the establishment of a standard of quality. It is necessary to have grading and standardization in all agricultural transactions. There should be strict adulteration law.
3. Storage facility: Storage facility improves the creditworthiness of farmers as they can obtain loans on the basis of commodities stored by them. Efficient storage facility reduces inter-seasonal price fluctuations. It prevents the loss of grains. So, the warehouse facility should be developed in different parts of the country.
4. Market Information: Market information keeps farmers and traders update to the demands and changing preferences of consumers, marketing, investing, etc. The market information includes information regarding prices, buyers, competitors, grade, stocks and movement of commodities and marketing surveys.
5. Uniformity of weight and measure: A standard form of weight and measure should be introduced throughout the country. Anybody violating this should be severely punished.