|Certifying agency||Directorate of Marketing and Inspection, Government of India|
|Product category||Agricultural products|
AGMARK is a certification mark employed on agricultural products in India, assuring that they conform to a set of standards approved by the Directorate of Marketing and Inspection, an agency of the Government of India. The AGMARK is legally enforced in India by the Agricultural Produce (Grading and Marking) Act of 1937 (and amended in 1986). The present AGMARK standards cover quality guidelines for 205 different commodities spanning a variety of Pulses, Cereals, Essential Oils, vegetable oils, Fruits & Vegetables, and semi-processed products like Vermicelli.
The term agmark was coined by joining the words 'Ag' to mean agriculture and 'mark' for a certification mark. This term was introduced originally in the bill presented in the parliament of India for the Agricultural Produce (Grading and Marking) Act.
The entire system of Agmark, including the name, was created by Archibald Macdonald Livingstone, Agricultural and Marketing Advisor to the Government of India, from 1934 to 1941. He was supported by a staff of several hundred. The system was designed to benefit local growers throughout India who were, in the absence of a certification as to quality, exposed to receiving less for their produce from dealers than its true worth.
The Agmark certification is employed through fully state-owned Agmark laboratories located across the nation which act as testing and certifying centres. In addition to the Central AGMARK Laboratory (CAL) in Nagpur, there are Regional AGMARK Laboratories (RALs) in 11 nodal cities (Mumbai, New Delhi, Chennai, Kolkata, Kanpur, Kochi, Guntur, Amritsar, Jaipur, Rajkot, Bhopal). Each of the regional laboratories is equipped with and specializes in the testing of products of regional significance. Hence the product range that could be tested varies across the centres.
Commodities and tests
The testing done across these laboratories include chemical analysis, microbiological analysis, pesticide residue, and aflatoxin analysis on whole spices, ground spices, ghee, butter, vegetable oils, mustard oil, honey, foodgrains (wheat), wheat products (atta, suji, and maida), gram flour, soyabean seed, bengal gram, ginger, oil cake, essential oil, oils and fats, animal casings, meat and food products.
- Directorate of Marketing and Inspection. 'Promotion of Standardisation and Grading of Agricultural and Allied Produce'.
- Ministry of food processing industries.
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- "Agricultural Produce (Grading and Marking) Act, 1937 (Act No. 1 of 1937) (as amended up to 1986)".
- Archibald McDonald Livingstone 1890-1972, in conversation with 1970.
- Agmarknet. 'Testing, Research And Standardisation Facilities.'