. The increase in the incomes of our working class population has resulted into increase in disposable income which can be spent on processed food. However, the change in food consumption pattern of the working class who prefer readymade food processed items is yet another important factor behind the rising need for food processing industries in India.
India is the 2nd largest fruits and vegetables producing country. The most exported food items here are fruit pulps, pickles, canned food, concentrated juice, and vegetables. Centpro has been helping with food processing technologies for decades now to increase the shelf life of the vegetables and fruit items.
The key challenges identified overall for the food processing sector in India are as follows:
Poor supply chain linkages
India’s agriculture market has a long and fragmented supply chain that results in high wastage and high costs, especially due to seasonality, perishability, and variability of produce.
The export related infrastructure for agri-produce is grossly inadequate, especially at sea ports and airports. More than 30 percent of the produce from the fields gets spoilt due to poor post-harvesting facilities and lack of adequate storage infrastructure.
Lack of skilled manpower
The agricultural workforce is inadequately skilled across different levels of food processing. Low adherence to quality standards: India lacks basic standardization and certification infrastructure. Given the size of the food processing industry, there is a huge gap in the availability of laboratories, trained manpower, and certification agencies.