MoUs worth ₹68000 crore inked on day one at World Food India

Saul Bowman
November 4, 2017

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday said the food sector that allows 100 per cent foreign investment was the priority in the government's ambitious "Make In India" programme.

Mr Modi, in his speech at the World Food India 2017, said that food processing is a way of life.

Speaking to ANI, Acharya Balkrishna said, "World Food India 2017 is a great initiative". India was ranked number 1 in the world in 2016 in greenfield investment.

Hindustan Unilever Ltd CEO and Managing Director Sanjiv Mehta said: "India is an attractive destination by any yardstik which you look at.We are talking about one of the most attractive markets and as the economy grows, there would be more people coming and moving up".

The Prime Minister said there are opportunities in post-harvest management, like primary processing and storage, cold chain and refrigerated transportation.

He said private sector participation had increased in many segments of the value chain but sought more investment in contract farming, raw material sourcing and creating agri linkages.

ITC, which inked an MoU with the Ministry of Food Processing Industries, said the planned 20 new integrated facilities will produce branded food products, including Aashirvaad atta, Sunfeast biscuits, YiPPee! noodles, Bingo! snacks, B Natural juices, and processed fruits and vegetables.

India is expected to attract an investment of U.S. $10 billion in food processing sector and generate 1 million jobs in the next 3 years. "India is also rapidly progressing on the "Global Innovation Index", "Global Logistics Index" and "Global Competitiveness Index", he said. "This is a clear opportunity for global chains", he said.

"There is also huge potential for food processing and value addition in areas such as organic and fortified foods".

"It will raise farmers' income and also enhance nutrition levels", he said. Khichdi also has qualities of wellness and health food and is very nutritious. The initial investment of Rs 6,000 crore would be used for setting up food processing units at a cost of Rs 2,500 crore and Rs 3,500 crore would be spent on setting up a Farmers Producers Organization (FPO).

Some of the leading companies that have signed the MoUs making investment commitments in various areas of food-processing include ITC, PepsiCo, Coca-Cola, Amazon, Patanjali, Hershey's, among others. "India is the third largest economy in terms of purchasing power and our demand for food is said to double over the next five years", Badal said.

Over 800 kgs of khichdi will be prepared live on 4 November at the festival in a bid to create a world record and popularise the dish globally.

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