Staff Reporter

KOLLAM: Work on a food research institute of the State government has almost been completed at Konni in Pathanamthitta district.

Food Minister C. Divakaran told The Hindu that the world-class institute was constructed at a cost of Rs.70 crore. He would inspect it on Monday.

Vice-President Hamid Ansari would inaugurate the institute in November. The date needed to be finalised.

The Minister said the institute had equipment imported from France. The institute would be a comprehensive microbiology lab equipped to test all food products, including seafood. Right now, only the private sector had such labs.

The lab would function under the Department of Food and Civil Supplies. Clearance certificates from it would be a valid document for food exports.