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MoFPI and investors ink 50 MOUs amounting to $11.25 billion at WFI '17

Updated: November 07, 2017

The three-day World Food India (WFI) 2017 bore fruit for the Indian food processing sector, as Memorandums of Understanding (MoUs) worth $11.25 billion were signed by the investors with the ministry of food processing and industries (MoFPI). They also inked MoUs worth $2.5 billion with two Indian states, namely Punjab and Haryana.

In his address to the gathering, India’s president Ram Nath Kovind said, “World Food India 2017 has helped showcase the vast and near-limitless opportunities in the food industry and in the food processing sector in India.”  Terming the event the Kumbh Mela of Indian food, he added that food was not just culture, but was also commerce. 

The president stated, “India’s food consumption is currently valued at $370 billion. It is expected to reach $1 trillion by 2025, in less than a decade. There are opportunities across the entire food value chain in India – including post-harvest facilities, logistics, cold chains and manufacturing. The food industry is a sector with a large business appetite and can be a huge employer.”

Noting that the food story in India had worldwide implications, Kovind said, “On a global scale, the market for Indian food products is massive. It extends from 1.8 billion people in South Asia to a 30-million-strong diaspora, and to millions more in all parts of the world.” He also presented Start-up Awards and Hackathon Awards to college students who helped suggest ways to detect food adulteration.

Harsimrat Kaur Badal, minister for food processing industries, said, “World Food India 2017 is the beginning, and not the end, as the deliberations and discussions with the investors have generated business worth $11.25 billion. Fifty MoUs were inked during the three days of the event.”  

“MoFPI’s resolve to help India establish itself as the world food factory has only been strengthened. And it will forge ahead to work expeditiously to implement these MoUs,” she added, stating that a special cell had been set up in Invest India to follow up on these negotiations, and the knowledge partners would help achieve the goals. 

Badal said, “The ministry is guided by the principles of  ensuring steps to reduce wastage, producing more and processing more. Farm to fork is the mantra, and the food processing industry has to act as the bridge between the farmers and the consumers.” 

She informed that while the states of Maharashtra and Telangana had announced their food processing policies, MoFPI would soon finalise the National Food Processing Policy. 

MoFPI stated, “WFI 2017 achieved a resounding success with delegates from over 60 countries and global chief executive officers (CEOs) congregating in New Delhi for the three-day conference and exhibition.”

“India’s president graced the valedictory session of the event and congratulated Badal, who was ably supported by Sadhvi Niranjan Jyoti, minister of state for food processing industries, for putting the mega event together with J P Meena, secretary, MoFPI, and other officials,” it added. 

Badal said, “The event witnessed the participation of 10,000 participants and over 8,000 business-to-business (B2B) and business-to-consumer (B2C) meetings were held.”

She highlighted her ministry’s resolve to follow through on the investments committed and stated that they would work to bring these investments online as soon as possible.

Farmers’ welfare key too
Along with food security, farmers’ welfare is also important. This was stated by Chandrababu Naidu, chief minister, Andhra Pradesh, at a session dedicated to the southern state, which was a part of World Food India 2017. He added that the state was creating an ecosystem for agriculture and food processing to prosper.

He participated in the session after attending the inaugural session of the event, which hosted over 7,000 stakeholders from 60 countries representing the food processing sector, with Modi.

Andhra Pradesh, being one of the partner states for the global event, held a special session to showcase the potential and advantages of the state’s food processing sector to the global community.

It was attended by a large number of potential investors and global delegates working in the food processing sector. 

Speaking at the session, Naidu said, “Along with food security, farmers’ welfare is also important, as the farmers have to sustain their economic activity, which is agriculture.”
“We are providing the inputs, best-quality seeds, abundant fertilisers, water and others to promote agriculture in the state,” he added.

“We have achieved 100 per cent soil testing to inform the farmer about the crop. Now, we are going for drones to do soil testing. We are supplying micro-nutrients free of cost,” the chief minister informed.

He added, “Twenty years ago, I promoted information technology in a big way. As a result, Hyderabad became a hub for knowledge economy.”

“Today, I am promoting agriculture and food processing to create an ecosystem in the state to benefit the farmers,” Naidu said.

“For the last three years, Andhra Pradesh has been focusing primarily on agriculture and food processing, mainly to increase the productivity and reduce the cost of production,” he added. 

Naidu said that the primary focus had been on horticulture, aquaculture and livestock. He expressed confidence that a day will come where everyone in the country will eat fruits produced in Andhra Pradesh, as the state was targeting one crore acre of horticulture.

“We are leveraging all technologies, best practices and knowledge available across the globe to benefit the farmer,” he added.

“We are using geo-tagging and smartphone applications to diagnose crop health in real-time,” Naidu said.

“We are closely working with the World Economic Forum (WEF) on a new agricultural vision. We are also creating farmer producer organisations (FPOs) and organise one million farmers in the state,” he added. 

“To overcome the water problem in the state, we undertook the exercise of digging six lakh farm ponds over a record period of two years for rainwater harvesting,” Naidu said.

“We linked the Godavari and Krishna rivers to irrigate lakhs of acres in the Krishna delta area”, the chief minister added.

“We are also going for micro irrigation to use water effectively. Our target is to achieve micro-irrigation for one million acre a year, and eventually bring one crore acre of agricultural land under micro-irrigation,” he said.

“Andhra Pradesh offers the best infrastructure, including ports and airports to support the agro-processing sector in the state,” Naidu added.

“The state also offers the best food processing policy, which supports the establishment of mega and integrated food parks,” he said. 

Naidu extended the support and cooperation by inviting investors present there to invest in the state. He added that the state wants to grow at 15 per cent within the next 15 to 20 years. 

Girija Shankar, secretary, food processing, government of Andhra Pradesh, made a presentation on investment opportunities in food processing in the state.

The event was attended by the following ministers from the government of Andhra Pradesh - N Amaranatha Reddy (minister for industries and commerce and food processing); Somireddy Chandramohan Reddy (minister for agriculture), and Adi Narayana Reddy (minister for marketing and warehousing, animal husbandry, dairy development, fisheries and cooperatives).

AP govt inks MoUs
In a major boost to the food processing sector in Andhra Pradesh, the state government signed 17 Memorandums of Understanding (MoUs) worth nearly Rs 4,000 crore with reputed international and national food processing companies at World Food India 2017 in New Delhi. These MoUs were signed in the presence of Naidu who attended the inaugural session. 

It signed a MoU with the United Arab Emiirates- (UAE) Sharaf Group, which promised to invest Rs 2,000 crore to set up a logistics and food park in the state.

Naidu held meeting with Shyam Kapur, its group vice-president, and invited the company to set up a mega food park by assuring all the cooperation in terms of providing land, water and necessary logistics.

The company also came forward to work with the state on capacity-building in boosting productivity.

Haldiram’s signed a MoU with the state government to set up a food processing and manufacturing unit with an investment of Rs 400 crore.

An MoU was signed with Janani Foods Pvt Ltd, who promised to invest Rs 500 crore on setting up an integrated horticulture project in the state.

Other MoUs were signed with ITC, Keventer Agro Ltd, Sesh Sai Foods, MNR Agri Food Products, Foods and Inns, Freshfrugies, RF Exports, Tifosi Foods and Waycool.

The Andhra Pradesh government also signed a MoU with Supermarket Grocery Supplier Pvt Ltd (BigBasket.com) to promote organic farming and provide market linkages to organic farmers.   

Naidu also held one-on-one meetings with the corporate leaders in the food processing industry and invited them to invest in the southern state.

He met Pieter Boone, global chief executive officer, Cargill Foods, and explained how the southern state was growing at a high pace in agriculture, aquaculture, poultry, dairy and livestock.

Mayank Jalan, managing director, Keventer Agro Ltd, in a meeting with Naidu, came forward to set up a banana procurement and processing unit in Andhra Pradesh. A MoU worth Rs 250 crore was signed in this regard.

The chief minister invited them to set up a banana cluster in the state, and that Andhra Pradesh was already leading in terms of yield per acre of banana plantation and could become a global hub for banana production.

Naidu also met Brent Afman, managing director, Association of South-east Asian Nations (ASEAN), OSI Vista Group, premier global supplier of custom value-added food products.

He met Michele Janizac and invited French companies to invest in dairy processing technology and manufacturing equipment.

The chief minister expressed happiness that many companies were coming forward to invest in the state.

“We brought a separate policy to promote food processing in Andhra Pradesh and the focus will continue to be there to benefit farmers,” he added.
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