In the recent meeting held in the Union Cabinet, the Centre has decided to set up a link between the farmers/agricultures and global retailers as well as processors. India has decided to organise the World Food Forum in March 2017 at Delhi.
The forum will help India increase its food processing graph make a rise to 25% from the current situation of 10% over the next five years. The following announcement was made by Honourable Union Minister of Food Processing Industries, Harsimrat Kaur Badal, GoI. She attended the meeting held months back thus addressing a conglomerate of domestic as well as overseas retailers on its second day of India Retail Forum 2016.
According to Harsimrat Kaur,The theme would be transforming `India’s Food Economy` with the entire gamut of stakeholders beginning from food machinery, retailers, processors, logistics providers and progressive farmers. Unlike Vietnam and Thailand that process 70% of their agricultural produce, India processes only 10% of its farm produce. This results in lower realisation for farmers and higher prices for the consumers, which we intend to overcome.
The forum mainly covered a detailed discussion over the waste management as well as food processing so as to facilitate wastage in the logistics space. The government is also looking forward set up a cold chain grid all over the country along with establishing food testing labs. Also, after the permission granted regarding foreign direct investment in multi-brand retail, there has been an increase in interest to invest in the food segment of India. All in all, the total 38,000 queries it received for Invest India, only 18,000 diverted to the food sector.
The last government in centre sanctioned 42 food parks out of which unfortunately only two were functional. But with the present government, there has been a commission of 6 parks and 4 are more to addition. The 37 food parks rest in the list will be commissioned by the next 24 months. The 3 food parks which have been withdrawnwill be considered for reallocation.Global retailers and processors are willing to get into JVs to tap and source India’s substantial raw material base, as per reports by IIFL.