Food Processing industry to touch Rs 4 lakh crore next year: FICCI


India’s food processing industry is expected to reach Rs 4 lakh crore mark by next fiscal, a Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI) and KPMG study on the industry says. It will make make up for roughly 6.5% of gross domestic product (GDP), as increasing urbanisation and higher disposable incomes are expected to drive demand for such items, the study says.

India’s food processing industry was valued at Rs 3.3 lakh crore in 2011-12 and it grew at compounded growth rate of 9% between 2008 and 2012.

“The industry is witnessing very low levels of food processing, while domestic and export demand exist and are growing. The sector also possesses the potential to reduce the burden of subsidies and raise the farmers’ incomes simultaneously,” said the study.

The report says increasing organised retail penetration and the government’s proposed mega food parks will encourage business expansions in the food processing sector and ensure higher realisation for farmers and a reduction in wastages.

Around 30% of the country’s food produce gets wasted annually mainly due to the lack of adequate post-harvest infrastructural facilities and inefficient supply chain management.

Only 7% of commodities sold by farmers are graded before sale. The unreasonably long supply chain results in a sharp rise in the total cost, factoring in procurement, transit and other taxes and service charges levied at various stages.

In spite of huge supply advantages, the country’s share in the global processed food trade is still around 1.5%. Late last month, a report by UK-based Institution of Mechanical Engineers also said as much as 40% of India’s fruits and vegetables and roughly 22% of wheat are lost annually due to poor cold storage facilities and infrastructural bottlenecks.

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