Staff Reporter

KOCHI: The Indian Chamber of Commerce and Industry has suggested that a State-level Processed Food Export Promotion Council be set up with the Chief Minister as chairman to give an impetus to the food processing industry in the State. The suggestion was made in a memorandum submitted to the Union Minister for Food Processing Subodh Kant Sahay by the Chamber.

It said that the Chamber was ready to provide all possible help to the Kerala Industrial Infrastructure Development Corporation (Kinfra) for the development of the food processing industry in the State. Among the areas suggested for special attention are: cold storage and warehousing facilities for the raw materials; a special package for assistance and incentives; and support for setting up processed food industries and promoting exports.

The memorandum pointed out that the facilities at the Government Laboratory, Kakkanad, should be upgraded so that the food processing industry could take advantage of the facility.

It said that the State could seek assistance from the Central Food Technological Research Institute, Mysore, for upgrading technology. The State government should persuade the institute to open an office in Kochi, it felt.

The Chamber also felt that the exporters from India should focus on markets where there was a large concentration of people of Indian origin.