FOOD PRO­CESS­ING · A PRI­OR­ITY SEC­TOR

Assocham Bulletin - - MONNET -

he Food Pro­cess­ing sec­tor in

In­dia is one of the largest in terms of prod uc­tion, con­sump­tion, ex­port and growth prospects. Apart from pro­vid­ing vi­tal link­ages be­tween in­dus­try and agri­cul­ture it cre­ates syn­ergy be­tween the two and has po­ten­tial for pro­vid­ing jobs in far flung ar­eas of In­dia. More­over it is well known fact that a sig­nif­i­cance pro­por­tion of the agri­cul­ture pro­duce get wasted dur­ing tran­si­tion from place of pro­duc­tion to con­sump­tion as well as dur­ing stor­age. Re­al­iz­ing sig­nif­i­cance of Food pro­cess­ing sec­tor, Min­istry of Food pro­cess­ing In­dus­tries, Govern­ment of In­dia has ac­corded pri­or­ity to its de­vel­op­ment with a num­ber of schemes for in­fra­struc­ture de­vel­op­ment, fis­cal relief and in­cen­tives. Through all these mea­sure, ef­forts are to en­cour­age com­mer­cial­iza­tion and value ad­di­tion to agri­cul­ture pro­duce, min­i­mize post-harvest wastage, gen­er­ate em­ploy­ment and boost ex­ports of pro­cessed food.

It is ev­i­dent in fast chang­ing macro-eco­nomic en­vi­ron­ment as well as mar­kets, stay­ing up dated on tech­nol­ogy front pro­vides an edge in the com­pet­i­tive mar­ket.

There­fore, food pro­cess­ing sec­tor in In­dia re­quires tech­nol­ogy up-gra­da­tion to tap global mar­kets as well as strength­en­ing its po­si­tion in do­mes­tic mar­ket. How­ever, this sec­tor is dom­i­nated by large num­ber of SMEs who re­quires fi­nance to meet their mod­ern­iza­tion de­mands. On the other hand there are tech­nol­ogy providers, in­no­va­tors and fi­nan­cial in­sti­tu­tions that are look­ing for buy­ers of their tech­nolo­gies and fi­nan­cial ser­vices. Creat­ing a plat­form where Food SMEs, tech­nol­ogy providers, banks, govern­ment of­fi­cials etc. in­ter­acts for pro­vid­ing boost to the growth of food pro­cess­ing sec­tor will be apt for growth.

To ad­dress this sub­ject mat­ter of na­tional im­por­tance, ASSOCHAM held a Con­fer­ence on Food Pro­cess­ing and Prad­han Mantri Kisan SAMPADAYo jana at The Tamil­nadu Agri­cul­tural Uni­ver­sity, Coim­bat­ore on April 27, 2018. The Con­fer­ence saw par­tic­i­pa­tion of stake­hold­ers from Food Pro­cess­ing Value Chain namely bankers, tech­nol­ogy providers, farm­ers, pro­duc­ers or­ga­ni­za­tions, self­help groups, re­tails com­pa­nies, etc. The stress was on tech­nol­ogy trends, fi­nance and lend­ing, in­ter-align­ment of food trade, faster au­to­mated pro­cess­ing & pack­ag­ing, train­ing pro­grammes and ed­u­ca­tion to­wards skilled re­sources, fu­ture prospects and in­sights on stated and im­plied re­quire­ments and needs of link­ing all these ac­tiv­i­ties with mar­ket.

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