Sectoral Strategies for Transforming the Food Processing Industries in India

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In the context of India’s vision of becoming the ‘Global Manufacturing Hub’; food processing is the ‘SUNRISE SECTOR’. The Food & Grocery market in India is the sixth largest in the world. Food & Grocery retail market in India further constitutes almost 65% of the total retail market in India. The Government of India through the Ministry of Food Processing Industries (MoFPI) is taking all necessary steps to boost investments in the food processing industry. The government has sanctioned 42 Mega Food Parks (MFPs) to be set up in the country under the Mega Food Park Scheme. Currently, 17 Mega Food Parks have become functional. Our food and retail markets are all set to touch $ 828.92 billion investment by 2020. The Processed food market is expected to grow to $ 543 bn by 2020 from $ 322 bn in 2016.

By 2024, the Food Processing industry will potentially attract $ 33 bn investments and generate employment for 9 million people. These are all remarkable targets and asipiration for us. The Government has been working to linking Indian farmers to consumers in the domestic and international markets. The Ministry of Food Processing Industries (MoFPI) is making all efforts to encourage investments across the value chain.

The potentiality of the food processing sector is huge. We shall acknowledge that India offers the largest diversified production base and has a growing food industry. We are the largest milk producing nation. We are the largest producer, consumer and exporter of spices. We are world’s second largest producer of food grains, fruits, and vegetables. Hence, we have a glorious legacy, excellent track records and necessary skills-technologies and know-how to become a ‘manufacturing Hub in the food processing sector.

To make this aspiration we need only three things: firstly promoting profitable farm production with appropriate agronomical practices, secondly, linking farmers with market and thirdly attracting investment for transforming this important sector.

The government has been already working to secure these ‘development triangle’. For instance, under the Nivesh Bandhu program, which is an investor facilitation portal to assist investors on the investment decisions. A special fund of $285 Mn has been set up in National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD) for affordable credit.

The government has also 100% FDI in the food processing sector. Sector-specific Skill Development Initiatives are also being taken up, with National Institute of Food Technology, Entrepreneurship and Management (NIFTEM) and Indian Institute of Food Processing Technology (IIFPT) being recognized as Centres of Excellence.

Apart from growing population and burgeoning purchasing power, rising urbanization, rising retail trade due to initiatives such as Digital India, together with the presence of global players of the industry can be considered as the major growth drivers for the segment.  We have a population base of 1.3 bn offering a large demand-driven market, with the retail sector expected to treble by 2020. Hence, this is our time now to make India Better! This is our time to make India a leader in the food processing Industry’.


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