FoodEx 2014 promises a bagful of opportunities

The step will bolster growth in the areas of agriculture, horticulture, food and other related sectors.

August 05, 2014 9:58 IST | India Infoline News Service
In its bid to incentivise expansion of processing capacity in the country, Finance minister Hon’ble Arun Jaitley in his maiden budget speech reduced excise duty from 10 per cent to 6 per cent on specific food processing and packaging machinery. The step will bolster growth in the areas of agriculture, horticulture, food and other related sectors.

Complementing the Government’s effort for the growth of the sectors, Media Today Group proudly announces the 6th edition of India Foodex 2014, recognized and acknowledged as India's Largest International Show on Food Products, Processing & Packaging Machineries and Allied Industries scheduled to be held at Bangalore International Exhibition Centre (BIEC), Bangalore from 22-24 August 2014.

Foodex 2014 will concurrently hold 5th GrainTech India 2014 on grains, cereals, spices, oilseeds, feeds, products & technologies; 6th AgriTech India 2014 on agriculture machinery, inputs, technologies and allied sectors; DairyTech India, on dairy products and animal farming equipment, Poultry & Live stock Expo and MeatTech Asia 2014 with a focus to upgrade and organize domestic supply chain and processing  & packaging

Foodex 2014 has a very strong support from prominent Indian agri and food sector organizations. Besides, various government organizations have come forward to support the initiatives of Media Today Group.

Potential of the sector:
The Ministry of Agriculture is aiming to double the production of all food crops through National Food Security Mission, MIDH & NHB and disseminating latest and modern technologies & practices of production and post harvest management. On the export front, the agro commodity exports from India has increased significantly in the last few years and now these exports account for a share of about 12.4% in overall merchandise export from the country.

The need of the hour in India is to increase productivity of Food grains, Fruits & vegetables and building of an effective supply chain to ensure that what is produced in the field reaches the consumer in good shape. Greater use of modern machinery have, therefore, become necessary in India, where plenty of produce is available for value addition and food processing, but have technical constraints in enhancing production and productivity because of inadequate exposure to high technology & inputs, coupled with advanced production practices, preservation, logistics and marketing. As a result, India is emerging as one of the hottest destinations not only for Food Processing and Packaging Machinery & Equipment imports from European and South East Asian Countries but also for Agro-Food products from international suppliers. In order to introduce latest technological innovations, this event is going to be proved an ideal platform to launch your exclusive range of products and services among thousands of Food processors, Machinery suppliers, importers and exporters coming in large numbers to this expo.

“5th edition India Foodex 2013” attracted participation from 26 countries and received tremendous support from all quarters. “Encouraged by overwhelming response, we are confident that the 6th edition is going to make a big difference in Indian food industry and create business opportunities for big, medium and small business houses in India and abroad. Already, we have confirmation from 29 countries and a large number of traders to make the show more versatile activity in terms of growth of food sector which would create large scale and skill development,” said Mr. S Jafar Naqvi, Chief Coordinator, India Foodex

Scenario of Indian Food Industry:
India is the world's second largest producer of food next only to China, but accounts for less than 1.5% of International Food Trade. The Indian Food Sector is poised for a rapid growth and has potential to become reliable outsourcing partner in the Food Industry given its strength in primary Food Sector. The Indian Food brands are now rapidly increasingly finding prime shelf space in the retail chains across US and Europe.

Potential Sectors:
Prominent among the areas waiting to be tapped are canning, packaging, refrigeration for dairy, poultry, fisheries, meat, ready to eat products, cereals and grains, soft drinks consumer product groups like confectionery, chocolates, coco products, soya-based products, mineral water, high protein foods and neutraceuticals, apart from health food and health food supplements, a rapidly rising segment of the food processing industry.

What ought to be done:
The focus of the now-independent Ministry of Food Processing Industries (MoFPI) headed by Mrs. Harsimrat Kaur Badal is to find bottlenecks and their resolutions. Among the biggest problem is availability of funds for the sector, which is important for revitalization of the industry

For the last fiscal (i.e. 2013-14), the ministry was earmarked a budget of Rs 708 crore. It is widely acknowledged that in order to provide a major philip to the sector, more funds are required and even the government is aware of the financial constraints of the sector. The government needs to act as a facilitator to resolve the issues concerning the industry and should consult all the stakeholders for the same. One of issues on which government needs to decide is allowing foreign direct investment (FDI) into the food processing sector.  At present, the sector accounts for 1.5% of the total FDI coming to the country. 

Latest Initiatives of the Government:
After dithering for years, Government of India last year announced decision to allow 51% FDI in multi-brand retails. Leading industrialists have reacted with a great sense of relief. The domestic industry hopes that the spate of economic reforms announced by the government will be a “mood lifter”, improving the global perception on India.

World's well established brands in food segment are readily available in Indian markets like American Garden, Unilever food products from USA, Agnesi Pasta from Italy, Dana regular & sugar free jam & butter cookies from Denmark, Kikkoman sauces from Japan, Olicoop Spanish Olives, Italian olive Oil, Ong's oriental food & sauces from Singapore/China, Beverages from UK, Chocolates & confectionery from Germany, Butter Toffees from Argentina, Salad dressings, Mayonnaise & Mustered Oil from Holland, Canned seafood & vegetables from Australia, sparkling grape juice from France, baby accessories from Taiwan, variety of mushrooms, Mexican food, Turkish delights, corn and Thai products and so on, list is endless.

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