Centre Urges Food Processing Industries To Buy Fruits And Food Grains From Farmers To Reduce Crop Deterioration

A woman farmers harvests pearl millet in Andhra Pradesh, India. Millets were once a steady part of Indians' diets until the Green Revolution, which encouraged farmers to grow wheat and rice. Now, the grains are slowly making a comeback

Expressing concern over the loss of harvested crops in various parts of the country, the Central government on Wednesday asked food processing industries to buy vegetables and fruits to reduce the wastage of the crops in order to benefit the farmers.

According to an official statement, Union Food Processing Industries Minister Harsimrat Kaur Badal raised the issue in a meeting with members of the industry chamber FICCI through video conferencing. She said that the needs of the food processing sector should be identified after the lockdown is over.

Harsimrat Kaur Badal expressed concern over the deterioration of harvested crops in different parts of the country. In the meeting, the Union Minister requested all the members to buy chopped wheat, paddy, fruits, vegetables, and other perishable crops to benefit the farmers.

The meeting was attended by FICCI Secretary General Dilip Chenoy, FICCI Food Processing Committee Chairman and CEO-ITC Foods Division Hemant Malik, Amul Managing Director RS Sodhi, Coca-Cola India President T Krishnakumar, Cargill India Chairman Simon George, Kellogg’s India Managing Director Mohit Anand, President of Mondelez International Deepak Iyer, along with MTR Foods CEO Sanjay Sharma, and CEO of Zydus Wellness Ltd. Tarun Arora and many others.

In the meeting, the Union Minister emphasized on resuming industry operations at full capacity without compromising on security measures. She also informed that the task force of the ministry is helping companies solve the challenges faced by them during the lockdown.

To revive the industry once again, Badal agreed to the industry’s demand on the need for detailed guidelines for food companies, as well as allowing 60-75 percent of the workers to operate the facilities.

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