Faster growth and scalability on Union Minister's agenda

By 10 Oct 2015

After a stirring inaugural address at the inaugural ceremony of the World Packaging Congress, the Union Food Processing Minister Harsimrat Kaur Badal spoke to the media persons. The highlights of the press conference was the government’s commitment to 42 mega food parks (MFP) approved by the government, which Badal said, could be operational by 2019. A rough estimate suggests that this will yield a potential investment of about Rs 14,000 crore and should benefit 12.5 lakh farmers and gener

The scheme was launched in 2008-09. Among the 42 MFPs, 17 MFPs were allotted in March this year to state governments and private firms. 

Four of them are to be set up in Maharashtra.

During her inaugural address, the Minister announced a Rs 2,000-crore package for a MFP, which will provide facilities to food processors, farmers, retailers and exporters, to help achieve faster growth for food processing industries.

She spoke at length about perishables in India, especially fruits and vegetables, as their processing in the country is as low as two per cent. She spoke about how bananas “perish” by the time they reach North India. She hoped that the packaging industry, plus other stakeholders, including farmers, consumers and the government, would ensure that food items are not wasted.

She hoped that the establishment of a strong food processing industry backed by an efficient supply chain, which includes collection centres, a central processing centre (CPC) and cold chain infrastructure will achieve faster growth for food processing industries.

The press conference was attended by dignitaries and members from IIP and the WPC as well as Rajani Ranjan Rashmi, additional secretary, the ministry of commerce and industry, Government of India.

HIGHLIGHTS
17 new MFPs
30 new cold chains
Rs 2,000-crore corpus in NABARD to encourage units to move into food parks
Credit at 9% interest
Priority sector lending by RBI for food processing
Reduced down excise duty on import of plant and machinery from 10% to 6%
A portal where investors and entrepreneurs can interact with the Ministry

 


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