Agriculture sector is the prime mover of State economy of Odisha. It drives the economy towards inclusive and sustainable development. Agriculture remain as the crucial sector in Odisha’s economy in term of its imposing contribution to State Domestic product, employment and income generating activities, environmental sustainability, livelihood of dependency of rural people etc. The broad Agriculture Sector comprise of agriculture, horticulture, animal husbandry, fisheries, forestry and other related activities. With the diversification of economic activities, there has been a structural change in the State economy with share of agriculture sector exhibiting declining trend. Still the sector remain prioritized as about sixty percent population of the State draws its sustenance fully or partly from the agriculture sector. Increasing agriculture production and productivity is necessary for ensuring food security, livelihood security and nutritional security. There is need to improve agricultural production and productivity with land and water management, rainfed agriculture, agricultural markets, better technology, higher public and private investments and effective implementation of ongoing programmes in agriculture and allied sectors. The shares and growth of the sector show wide variations from year to year. The share of this sector in the GSDP, which has more than 70% in the early 1950s, has come down to 15.39 percent, as per the advance estimates for the year 2014-15.
The climate of the State is tropical, characterized by high temperature, high humidity, medium to high rainfall and mild winters. The normal annual rainfall is 1,451.2 mm of which the South-West monsoon contributes about 80 percent. From the physiographic point of view, the State has been divided into four zones, viz (i) the Northern Plateau, (ii) the Eastern Ghat Zone, (iii) the Central Table Land, and (iv) the Coastal Zone. On the basis of climate, soil, rainfall and topography, the State has been delineated into ten Agro Climatic Zones. The State’s Agriculture Sector frequently suffers from natural calamities like cyclones, droughts and flash floods which substantially affect production and productivity of agriculture.