Lack of cold chain facilities resulting in loss of farm produce :Study
Business Line 19th, August 2009
India falls short by 10 million tonnes in cold storage facilities resulting in a loss of up to 30% of the farm produce post-harvest.
According to an Assocham-KPMG report on food processing and agri-business, the country requires over 31 mt, but has facilities for only 21.7mt cold storage.
Also, export- related infrastructure for agricultural products is grossly inadequate at ports and airports, it said.
According the Mr. Sajjan Jundal, President Assocham, cold storage facilities are available for single commodities such as potatoes, oranges, besides flowers. This results in poor capacity utilisation.
Land acquisition for setting up warehousing and cold storage facilities remains a major bottleneck as without government intervention, land cannot be acquired, he said.
The Ministry of Agriculture and Food Processing should therefore, facilitate land acquisition so that a good number of cold storage facilities are put up near ports and airports to reduce transaction costs, he said.
The report further said that the supply chain is dominated by unorganised players and there is no structured market to ensure correct price discovery and availability of consistent quality produce.
It also recommends more fiscal incentives for technology upgrade in food processing.