About $5 billion worth investments in food processing infrastructure to be leveraged to help two million farmers, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said at the inauguration of World Food India 2017 in the New Delhi on Friday.
“Mega food parks a key component to link agro processing centres to food production centres. This will benefit those into farming of potato, pineapple, orange and apple. Farmers’ groups have been asked to set up processing units in mega food parks. Nine parks are operational and 30 others coming up soon,” Mr. Modi said. This will also help “reduce food wastage and create job” opportunities.
Government also helping in “linking villages to broadband connectivity, digitise land records, and provide services to farmers on mobile phones” so that it helps in real time transfer of information, knowledge and skills to farmers, Mr. Modi said.
“India is among the fastest growing economies in the world. GST has eliminated multiplicity of taxes. India jumped 30 places in World Bank’s Doing Business ranking, and has now reached top 100. This is the highest jump for any country this year in the rankings. India was ranked number one in 2016 in Greenfield investments,” Mr. Modi said.
India was 142nd in 2014 in World Bank’s doing business ranking.
The event, organised by Food Processing Industries (FPI) ministry, aims to transform the country’s food economy and realize the vision of doubling of farmers’ income by establishing India as a preferred investment destination and sourcing hub for the global food processing industry.
“Food processing has been made a priority sector in the Make In India initiative. The government has allowed 100% FDI in trading including through e-commerce for food items produced and processed in India. Central and State governments provide several incentives in food processing,” he added.
Besides, National Agricultural e-market connecting agricultural markets nationwide to help in competitive pricing of products. PM also said several States are bringing out “attractive” food processing policies, aligned with the efforts of the Centre.