Food processing policy likely in 2 months: Official

A separate Food Processing and Contract Farming policy is likely to be in place in another two months in the state, a senior state government official said today.

The policy was drafted to provide a win-win situation to those in the field, particularly farmers, and awaiting approval, Principal Secretary and Commission Agriculture Marketing and Agri Business, Tamil Nadu, S J Chiru said. Addressing a two-day Coconut Festival which began here, Chiru said efforts are on to come out with a Neera Policy also.

ICAR Centre Plantation Crop Research Institute Director Dr P Chowdappa said India’s value addition in coconut was just eight per cent compared to over 60 per cent in other countries and should be increased to at least 25 per cent to enhance the growers’ income.

The festival, organised by CII, has the central theme ‘Farm to Fridge and Beyond: More nuts per tree More Value per Nut’ its convener S Sethilnathan said.

With its vast potential, the coconut sector can generate a businessof Rs.30,000 crore by value addition and other means and also generate an employment of 70 lakh, Senthilnathan said.

Coir Board Chairman C P Radhakrishnan, Indian Institute of Food Processing Technology director, Dr C Ananthakrishnan, Tamil Nadu Agricultural University Vice Chancellor, Dr K Ramasamy, were among those who spoke.moneycontrol

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