The diverse agro-ecological conditions in the country are favourable for growing nine annual oilseed crops, which include seven edible oilseeds (groundnut, rapeseed & mustard, soybean, sunflower, sesame, safflower and niger) and two non-edible oilseeds (castor and linseed)and several perennial oil bearing tree crops. India is one of the major oilseeds grower and importer of edible oils. India’s vegetable oil economy is world’s fourth largest after USA, China & Brazil. The oilseed accounts for 13% of the Gross Cropped Area, 3% of the Gross National Product and 10% value of all agricultural commodities. This sector has recorded annual growth rate of area, production and yield @ 2.44%, 5.47% and 2.96% respectively during last decade (1999-2009). These oilseed crops are widely distributed in various agro-ecological niches of the country. Researchers, developmental agencies, policy makers and industries are making concerted efforts to increase oilseed production in the country. To support and sustain their efforts and to have exchange of scientific information and ideas a strong need was felt for initiating a scientific society of oilseeds for bringing together all the relevant stakeholders viz., organizations and institutions interested in or engaged in research, development, technology, processing and allied products connected with oilseed sector. In the AICRP workshop on oilseed crops held in 1982 at the University of Agricultural Sciences, Bangalore, the oilseed researchers group proposed to form a scientific society. Accordingly, the Indian Society of Oilseeds Research (ISOR) was launched and got registered in the office of the Registrar of Societies, Hyderabad on 14th December, 1983 (Registration No.2049) under the Andhra Pradesh (Telangana Area) Public Societies Registration Act 1350 Fasli (Act I of 1350F).
Honorable Dr. O.P.Gautam and Dr.N.S.Randhwa, former DGs, ICAR were patrons and Dr. M.V.Rao, former Special DG, ICAR was the first President of ISOR and guided the activities of the society during 1983 to 1990 and 2006 to 2009. Distinguished past presidents of the Society who have strengthened the society by providing constant support to various activities include Dr.R.S.Paroda; Dr.V.L.Chopra; Dr.Mangala Rai; former Secretary, DARE and DG, ICAR, Dr.E.A.Sidiq and Dr. G. Kalloo former DDG(CS), ICAR , Dr. D. M. Hegde, Dr. K.S.Varaprasad former Project Director(s) of DOR, and Dr. Arvind Kumar, Vice-Chancellor, Rani Laxmi Bai Central Agricultural University (RLBCAU), Jhansi and Former DDG (Education). The present President of the Society is Dr. Trilochan Mohapatra, Secretary (DARE) & DirectorGeneral (ICAR)
ISOR began to publish biannual scientific Journal "Journal of Oilseeds Research" from 1984, which is a unique Journal in the country publishing scientific –papers/reviews on all aspects of annual & perennial oilseeds crops. Due to constant guidance of honorary members of ISOR the pattern of the Journal and quality of printing of the Journal has been improved. The NAAS rating is also increased from 3.97 to 5.02
Since its inception during 1983, the Society has expanded continuously and has more than 1216 life members and more than 200 annual members. The Society has honored the personnel who have rendered special services to the progress of the oilseed sector in the country and the life members have been honored as Fellows of ISOR for their contributions to oilseed research and development in the country. Best research paper published in the Journal of Oilseeds Research and Ph.D thesis on oilseed research are recognized and best among them are suitably awarded by ISOR. The Society is also organizing National Seminars/ Symposium and Conference regularly.