Port Wings News Network:
India is the world's second largest producer of food net to China, and has the potential of being the biggest with the food and agricultural sector. The food processing industry is one of the largest industries in India-it is ranked fifth in terms of production, consumption, export and expected growth. The food industry is on a high as Indians continue to have a feast.
Accounting for about 32 per cent of the country's total food market, the food processing industry is one of the largest industries in India and is ranked fifth in terms of production, consumption, export and expected growth.
The total food production in India is likely to double in the next 10 years with the country's domestic food market estimated to reach US$ 258 billion by 2015. The food processing industry forms an important segment of the Indian economy in terms of contribution to GDP, employment and investment, and is a major driver in the country's growth in the near future. This industry contributes as much as 9-10 per cent of GDP in agriculture and manufacturing sector.
The Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) has estimated that the foods processing sectors has the potential of attracting US$ 33 billion of investment in 10 years and generate employment of 9 million person-days.
Food processing is a large sector that covers activities such as agriculture, horticulture, plantation, animal husbandry and fisheries. It also includes other industries that use agriculture inputs for manufacturing of edible products. The Ministry of Food Processing, Government of India indicates the following segments within the Food Processing industry.
Tamil Nadu is a strong player in agro food processing industry:
Agricultural output has grown at CAGR of 5% as compared to the CAGR of 3% of the Indian agricultural sector from 2008-12. According to details available, while the state is numero uno producer of banana in the country, it is the second largest producer of poultry and dairy products as well as the third largest producer of tea and coffee in India.
Tamil Nadu’s Competitive Advantage:
Tamil Nadu has diverse soil and climatic conditions across seven agro climatic zones which provides ample opportunity to grow a variety of horticulture crops. Besides, 74.66 Acres of Land is available (as on 28.02.2015) for allotment in DTA (Domestic TariffArea) and opportunities are on for new industrial parks for Food Processing Industries at Dindigul, Theni, Virudhunagar Districts with common facilities like cold storage and warehouse.
Furthermore, marine based industries at Thoothukudi and Kanyakumari could also become a game-changer for the state gifted with three major ports and numerous non-major ports for export of processed products to global markets.
It may be noted that the Ministry of Food Processing Industries has so far sanctioned three cold-chain projects.
Opportunities for Investment in Tamil Nadu:
The segments like, Beverages Meat and poultry processing, Agriculture/horticulture, Food and Agri business parks and export oriented processing holds the key in attracting more investments in the state.
The food processing sector has undoubtedly the potential to be an industry driver that can transform India's rural economy, but there are a number of constraints both in the forward and backward linkages in the sector.
According to Mr Ravindra Sannareddy, Chairman, Southern Regional Council, ASSOCHAM, the agro-climatic condition in the State made it suitable for growing almost all kinds of agricultural and horticultural crops and setting up of food processing industries.
According to experts, if the constraints in the backward and forward linkages in the food processing sector are dealt accordingly, Tamil Nadu can play an important as well as catalytic role for the country and could become the food processing capital of India.
Task Before the Tamil Nadu Govt:
During the Global Investors Meet (GIM), if the Tamil Nadu government is able to attract more investments in the agro and food processing segment, it would augur well for the sustained growth of the industries in the state.