The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA), chaired by the Prime Minister Narendra Modi on December 10 has approved the inclusion of all North Eastern States for setting up food processing units within the Sub scheme of the Horticulture Mission for North East & Himalayan States (HMNEH) of the Integrated Mission for Development of Horticulture (MIDH).
North Eastern States, which are horticulturally rich, will be able to take up projects on food processing industries, thus enabling better shelf life and value addition of produce. The programme for setting up food processing units will cover all States in the North East and the Himalayan Region of the country.
The total expenditure of Rs 16,840 crore has been envisaged for implementing MIDH during the XII Plan. This includes Rs 15,794 crore as Government of India share out of which Rs 3000 crore is for the HMNEH sub scheme. Expenditure on setting up food processing units in the North Eastern States will be met within this provision.
MIDH was launched during 2014-15 by subsuming six ongoing schemes of the Department of Agriculture & Cooperation on horticulture development viz. three Centrally Sponsored Schemes of the National Horticulture Mission (NHM), Horticulture Mission for North East & Himalayan States (HMNEH), National Bamboo Mission (NBM), and three Central Sector Schemes viz. National Horticulture Board (NHB), Coconut Development Board (CDB) and Central Institute for Horticulture CCIH) Nagaland. The interventions under MIDH include production and productivity improvement programmes along with infrastructure development for post-harvest management, food processing and markets.
While launching MIDH, food processing component was included only in the Himalayan States of Himachal Pradesh, Jammu & Kashmir and Uttarakhand, within HMNEH. This was on the presumption that funds earmarked by the Ministry of Food Processing Industries (MOFPI) for setting up food processing units in North Eastern States will be available for the purpose. However, the scheme of MOFPI on Technology Upgradation, under which funds were released to the North Eastern States for setting up food processing units, was discontinued with effect from 2014-15. It has therefore been decided to include the North Eastern States for availing assistance for setting up food processing units within the ambit of MIDH.