: The Centrally-sponsored ‘National Mission on Food Processing’ (NMFP) has been established jointly by the State government and Union Ministry of Food Processing Industries. The objective of the programme is decentralisation of implementation of schemes through participation by State governments.

In a press release issued here on Wednesday, C.Manoharan, Collector, said the NMFP would focus on food processing for enhancing farm productivity and farmer’s revenue. The State government would be facilitated in addressing both institutional and infrastructural gaps along the value chains. An efficient supply chain for farm produce would be created. It would also promote initiatives for skill development, training and entrepreneurship in post-harvest management and food processing industry. The food processing industry would be assisted to meet the standards in terms of food safety laws and market demand – both domestic and international.

Entrepreneurship development programme would be taken up. A sum of Rs.2 lakh up to each EDP would be provided. Setting up of food processing training centre, single product or multi-product line centre with a revolving seed capital would be some of its salient features.

With a view to promoting human resource development activities, the scheme facilitates creation of infrastructure for offering degree, diploma certificate in food processing technology.

A maximum of Rs.75 lakh would be available for providing the infrastructure such as technical, academic books, laboratory equipment and pilot plant.

Technology upgrading, setting up of new, modernisation or expansion of food processing industry would be permitted with a sanction of 25 per cent of cost of plant and machinery and civil work. The ceiling would be Rs.50 lakh. Cold chain facility, Reefer vehicles would also be permitted.

It would also provide for promotional activities such as seminars, workshops, studies, surveys up to 50 per cent of the cost or a maximum of Rs.3 lakhs. Exhibition and fairs would also be conducted depending upon the merit of the proposal, the release added. Interested persons could submit applications to State Mission Director through District Food Processing Mission Committee, led by the Collector. Further details can be had by contacting Deputy Director of Agriculture (Agri Business), Pudukottai, the release added.

Focus of the mission will be on enhancing farm productivity and farmers' revenue