Agriculture Minister Radha Mohan Singh today called upon investors to leverage opportunities in the country’s farm, dairy, poultry and fisheries sectors. The government is implementing various schemes to promote these sectors in order to double farmers’ income by 2022, he said at the World Food India 2017 event here. “…the world is eager to study and adapt our growth strategy,” he was quoted as saying in an official statement. He added that India has moved ahead from a country facing food shortages to becoming a food exporter. He said there are investment opportunities here as India is the world’s largest milk producer, second largest fruits and vegetable producer, third in the production of fish and fifth in egg production. Stating that the government is giving emphasis on boosting agricultural growth, Singh said various steps have been taken including launch of schemes like Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana, Paramparagat Krishi Vikas Yojana, e-NAM, Pradhan Mantri Krishi Sinchai Yojana and Soil Health Card. The government has also allowed 100 per cent foreign direct investment in food processing.
Speaking at the event, Nestle India Chairman and Managing Director Suresh Narayan talked about different opportunities in the dairy sector. The per capita consumption of milk is rising in the country and the milk can be fortified with vitamins thereby increasing its nutritional value, he said. Nekkanti Sea Foods Director Venkat Rao said the opportunities exist in the shrimp sector and also talked about challenges like traceability being faced by the industry.
“India is cost competitive compared to other nations. Skill development is a major area that needs attention,” he said. Rasna Pvt Ltd Managing Director Piruz Khambatta said the food processing industry will not only promote ‘Make in India’ but also help in doubling farmers’ income.