‘100% FDI in multi-brand retail of food items will reduce inflation’

The Minister said that such a move will bring down food inflation, create more jobs and lead to rapid infrastructure development The Dollar Business Bureau

100% FDI in multi-brand retail of food items will reduce inflation The government has opened three mega food parks and is planning to operationalise two mega food parks within February and another two before March, the minister said

  Union Minister for Food Processing Harsimrat Kaur Badal has asked the Centre to allow 100% Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) in multi-brand retail of food products processed in India, saying that the move will benefit farmers and reduce inflation in the country. “I have requested the Prime Minister that 100% FDI in multi-brand retail of food products produced and processed in India should be allowed, so that those big companies can create infrastructure, especially for the agriculture sector and bring the latest technology for the farm sector,” she said at the eighth Global Food Processing Summit organized by the ASSOCHAM. The Minister said that such a move will bring down food inflation, create more jobs and lead to rapid infrastructure development. Referring to her home state as an example, she said, “In Punjab, it (100% FDI) has been done, it has benefitted everybody, there is no trader in the middle who has lost out, there is no farmer who has lost, no industry has lost out, so it has been a win-win situation and it has been a tried and tested formula.” With the technology transfer from globally-established brands and multi-national companies to Indian operators, the move will help benefit the consumer by controlling inflation and wastage and increasing availability of fresh and processed variety of food at a stable price. “As food processing sector grows, it will lead to increase in demand for farmer’s produce, besides, things like technology transfer, imparting technical know-how and promoting usage of better seeds can further help in uplifting the standard of farmers in the country,” she said. The minister also said that the central government has opened three mega food parks and is planning to operationalise two mega food parks within February and another two before March. “All in all, four mega food parks would be operationalised this year and the government has also planned to operationalise 4-5 mega food parks next year as well,” she added. Badal said that considering almost 16% of farm produce worth over Rs.92,000 crore gets wasted largely due to lack of infrastructure, it is imperative for the government to make demand-driven agricultural policies and put requisite infrastructure in place.   

February 10, 2016 | 04:25pm IST

The Dollar Business Bureau - Feb 10, 2016 12:00 IST
 
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