Investors meet on food processing on Oct 15

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Hyderabad, Oct 13 (UNI) Investors meet for the development of food processing sector in Andhra Pradesh would be held here on October 15.

State Food Processing, Agriculture Marketing and Cooperation Department Principal Secretary Pankaj Dwivedi told newspersons here that the Department of Food Processing Industries of the Union Government, and Food Processing, Agriculture Marketing and Cooperation department of Andhra Pradesh, would jointly organise the meet.

Union Minister of State for Food Processing Industries Subodh Kant Sahay would inaugurate the meet and interact with the investors and State Food Processing Minister M Mareppa would be the chief guest, he added.

India stands first in the world in production of pulses, milk and tea, second in production of fruit and vegetables, rice, wheat, sugarcane, third in grain and edible oil seeds, fifth in poultry and seventh in the production of fish. Despite that, the country processes only two per cent of fruit and vegetables, 35 per cent of milk, 26 per cent of fish, and overall processing level of only six per cent as compared to nearly 70 to 80 per cent in the developed countries, he informed.

He said lack of processing and storage of fruits and vegetables results in huge wastage estimated at about 35 per cent worth Rs 33,000 crore for perishables and Rs 15,000 crore for non-perishables annually.

He said the objective of Vision 2015 was to increase level of processing of perishable food from six per cent to 20, value addition from 20 per cent to 35 per cent and share in global food trade from 1.6 per cent to 3 per cent. The level of processing for fruits and vegetables was visioned to increase to 10 per cent and 15 per cent in 2010 and 2015 respectively.

An estimated investment of Rs one lakh crore was required to achieve the vision, of which Rs 45,000 crore was expected to come from private sector, Rs 45,000 crore from financial institutions and Rs 10,000 crores from the government.

He said a National Agri-business policy for Food Processing was underway to address various constraints being faced by the food processing sector.

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