Tuesday, October 13, 2009: 02:15:20 PM

Food Processing - Press Release

PM inaugurates the first conference of State Food Processing Ministers

Prime Minister inaugurates first conference of State Ministers of Food Processing Industries in New Delhi

“The Centre and states can work together in seizing the opportunities in the food processing sector of India,” says Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.

 

Minister for Food Processing Industries, Subhodh Kant, indicated that Rs 1,00,000 crore is to be invested in the food processing industry by 2015.

 

According to the Prime Minister, inadequate infrastructure and the structure of taxation are the major hurdles in the growth of food processing industry in the country. While addressing the first conference of State Food Processing Ministers in New Delhi, Dr Singh said that there should be coordinated effort by the Centre and the state governments for the growth of this sector. He also stressed that both the Centre and the states should work together to tap the immense opportunities offered by the food processing sector. He added that it is a sunrise industry and has the potential to improve rural livelihood and employment opportunities.

 

India is the world’s largest producer of milk, pulses and tea and ranks second in the production of fruits and vegetables. Dr Singh said despite being a major food producer, India's share in world food trade is less than 2%. Several measures have been undertaken by the UPA Government to give thrust to the food processing industry.

 

On this occasion, Mr Kant  said that the Ministry has projected an investment of Rs 1,00,000 crore in the food processing sector for the period ending 2015 of which Rs 45,000 crore is expected to come from the private sector. Around 50% of this projection is expected during the 11th plan period. The Indian food processing sector including value-added products such as semi-processed and ‘ready-to-eat’ packaged food has an approximate annual turnover of Rs 3,720,003,839,366.00.

 

He further said that banks may consider food processing as a priority area, make specific target for branches in this respect and avail refinance against their lending towards agro-processing from National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD).

 

Ashok Sinha, Secretary of Ministry of Food Processing, said that the food processing industry currently employs about 1.6 million workers directly or indirectly and it is projected to grow to 37 million by 2025. He also said that a major hindrance for the development of food processing sector is prevention of loss due to poor post-harvest management as well as inadequate infrastructure and programmes for processing of agri-produce.

 

For further information please contact:

 

Press Information Bureau

"A" - Wing, Shastri Bhawan,

Dr. Rajendra Prasad Road,

New Delhi - 110 001

Tel: (011) 23389338

Website: www.pib.nic.in


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