At the beginning of November, the World Food India trade fair took place in Delhi for the first time. The event was organized by the Ministry of Food Processing Industry, illustrating the priority of Prime Minister Modi’s government to take processing, logistics and refrigeration chains to a higher level.
The emergence of an urban middle class, the rapidly changing food patterns and the enormous decay of fruit and vegetables in the beginning of the chain underscore the need for the changes. India, with 1.3 billion inhabitants, is the second producer in the world of fruit and vegetables with a combined output of 285 million tonnes. Only 2% to 3% of this is processed; the waste can be as high as 40%. To get that right, is a challenge that, given the size of India, even for global food security can be called important.
The Netherlands attended World Food India as Focus Country with a collective pavilion organized by the Netherlands Enterprise Agency (RVO) in which 28 companies and knowledge institutes participated. The Postharvest Network had delegated Peter Ravensbergen to be panelist and speaker on the side event “Food Processing for Small and Medium Enterprises” during the World Food India congress from November 3 till 5, 2017.
The minister of Food Processing, Mrs. Harsimrat Kaur Badal, held a charismatic speech on the possibilities for the reduction of food waste in India. The Postharvest Network and Wageningen University & Research will continue the discussion with this ministry in order to develop a national grid of food processing in order to reduce food losses drastically.
Peter’s opinion: “It will happen in India in the next decade, however it will not be an easy-to-conquer market.” Please download his PowerPoint presentation “Quality driven innovations in the fresh food supply chains to reduce food losses and waste” (PDF, in English).
Please find more background information on Agroberichten Buitenland (in Dutch).