Food processing industry is of enormous significance for India's development because of the vital linkages and synergies that it promotes between the two pillars of our economy, industry and agriculture. Fast growth in the food processing sector and progressive improvement in the value addition chain are also of great importance for achieving favourable terms of trade for Indian agriculture both in the domestic and international markets. Even more important is the crucial contribution that an efficient food processing industry could make in the nation's food security. The simple fact that the post-harvest losses are about 25 to 30 per cent in our country should serve as an eye opener for all of us. Even marginal reductions in these losses are bound to give us great relief on the food security front as well as improve the income levels of the farmers.
The food processing industry of India is one of the largest in the world in terms of manufacture, use, export, and development. The sector has immense potential to contribute to growth and employment opportunities of the country.
The Indian food industry is poised for huge growth, increasing its contribution in world food trade every year. In India, the food sector has emerged as a high-profit sector on the back of the scope it offers for value addition, particularly with the food processing industry getting recognized as a high-priority area.
The Indian food and grocery market is the world’s sixth largest, with retail contributing 70 per cent of the sales. It is projected to grow at the rate of 104 per cent, touching US$ 482 billion by 2020.
The Indian food processing industry accounts for 32 per cent of the country’s total food market, 14 per cent of manufacturing GDP, 13 per cent of India’s exports and six per cent of total industrial investment.
The food processing industry in India has a total turnover of around USD 65 billion which includes value added products of around USD 20.6 billion.
Food processing involves any type of value addition to agricultural or horticultural produce and the products that there follow. The grading, processing and packaging of foods all fall under this umbrella. The Food Processing Industry sector in India is a global contender in terms of production, consumption, exports and growth prospects.
India is expected to attract an investment of $10 billion in food processing sector and generate 1 million jobs in the next 3 years. The Food Processing Industry in India offers unique opportunities in production and export of processed food. It has a strong and dynamic food processing sector playing a vital role in diversifying the agricultural sector, improving value addition opportunities and creating surplus food for agro-food products.