Some interesting facts
- India is short by 10 million tonnes of cold storage capacity due to which
over 30 percent of agricultural produce goes waste every year, according
to an industry report.
- More than 30% of produce from fields is lost to poor post-harvesting facilities
and lack of cold chain infrastructure.
- Also 20% of food grain that India produces annually is eaten by rodents.
- Only 7% of food in India is processed. The United Kingdom process +65% of
its food. Even a developing country like the Philippines processes as much as 45%
of its food.
- India, the world’s second largest fruit and vegetable producer encounters a waste
of close to 50% worth of produce.
- India has the honour of being the largest producer of milk in the world. However,
the amount of Milk that it wastes or looses each year is said to be equal to the
total Milk produced in the European Union.
With such a monumental wastage in Indian agricultural sector; it would be advisable
to rethink seriously into the golden opportunities which this wastage has in store
for investors in agro business in India.
Some keys to the riddle of wastage are:
- Transfer of Technology- technical & managerial:
Select technologies that will augment the produce & avoid wastage. Current practice is a complete mis-match of priorities & technologies.
- Creation of adequate agri-infrastructure will raise productivity, reduce transportation costs, and increase farmer’s access to markets and lower production costs. Sharing experiences at State levels will be more in the right direction. Such as; Transportation & collection. Distribution & Warehousing- Silos, grains, use French know how & experience on storage in silos which avoids loss.
- Eggs- Further processing is required as India is one of the largest producers but does not exploit the advantage.
- Fish & Aquaculture: First R&D Aquaculture French project is still functioning in Chennai region after more than 25 years-whereas others failed & were prone to diseases leading to closures.
- Meat & chicken production & processing has improved – but has been tailored to Export obligations only & have ignored the domestic demands & needs due to poor infrastructure.
To quote a few attractive factors in India’s favour - The biggest factor in India’s favour in the world food market is that of a
Indian Government is committed to the target of doubling its processed food production by 2015.
There is a shift from conventional farming to commercial farming.
India is a vast source of raw material.
The present market is in the form of large urban middle class.