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NBFC for Food Processing sector by the end of this year: Harsimrat Kaur Badal

Minister releases Cargill India’s Study report on Fixing Asia’s Food System

Tuesday, September 11, 2018, 15:51 Hrs  [IST]
HBI Staff|New Delhi

Harsimrat Kaur Badal, Minister for Food Processing Industries, Government of India expects the proposed dedicated Non-Banking Financial Company (NBFC) for the Food Processing sector to become a reality by the end of this year. She said that the Request for Proposal (RFP) for NBFC will be invited by the end of this month and proposals will be scrutinised and the bank will be constituted hopefully by the end of the year. 

The Minister said that many international “big funds” have already elicited interested to participate in the NBFC. She was speaking to media after launching a report on Asia’s Food System by the Economic Intelligence Unit of Cargill India. 

 When enquired about the expected corpus of the proposed NBFC, the Minister said that she expects the bank to start with an initial corpus of Rs 2,000 cr and going up further in the years to come. The Minister expected the proposed NBFC to look at, besides its primary job of lending, contribute to wider issues of the sector like capacity building, research and development aimed at reducing food wastage, training, education and awareness building. 

Talking about the report by Cargill India, the Minister said that such reports helps the policy makers in formulating policies that cater to the future demands of the sector. It also acts as a reliable guide for the farmers and the food processing industry as to the future trends and opportunities, she said. She said that food is something that transcends all geographical boundaries.

 She said that the developed countries should collaborate with countries like India and pass on technologies that help reduce food wastage. Although India is largest producer of fruits, vegetables, marine foods, etc., only 10% is get processed. Lot of food get wasted at the farm, on transit, etc., she said. She urged for a collective body to engage the different verticals of the food industry and work with a common goal. 

 Talking about the report, Siraj Chaudhry, Chairman, Cargill India said that Asia is an important region in the food basket of the world because the continent will be home for nearly half of the world’s urban population by 2030. And three quarters of Aisa’s urban dwellers will be in three countries – China, India and Indonesia. 85% of the increase in global middle class expected to be in this region, he said, creating new food habits, purchasing patterns, consumption behaviours, etc. The demand for ready to cook and energy dense food will shoot up in the region.

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