Agri-business meet aims at ` 54,000 cr investment

Agriculture and Food Processing Additional Secretary Dr Vasanthkumar speaking at an interaction organised at KCCI in Mangalore, on Tuesday. DH photoThe Karnataka agri-business policy is aimed at creating an environment for attracting investment in agro-processing and value addition sectors through public-private partnership. The global agri-business and food processing meet aims at getting investment of Rs 54,000 crore in the next five years after the global agri-business and food processing meet scheduled to be held in September or November, said department of Agriculture and Food Processing Additional Secretary Dr Vasanthkumar.

Speaking at a presentation and discussion on integrated agri-business development policy 2011 of Karnataka government at a programme organised by Kanara Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KCCI) and Federation of Karnataka Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI) here on Tuesday, he said the policy will treat farmers as entrepreneurs and partners themselves, who will have linkages with investors.

Agri-investment corridor

He said that agri-investment corridors of 5,000 hectares each will be set up using land bank of the Karnataka Industrial Area Development Authority (KIADB) to develop agri-business.

About 15,000 to 20,000 hectares land will be required for the corridor. This corridor compliments the abundant resources, skills sets, physical infrastructure and connectivity, thereby ensuring that the State becomes the most preferred destination for agri-business. The corridor includes three integrated Agri Business Investment Regions encompassing agriculture, horticulture, fisheries, dairy, animal husbandry and food processing sectors.

“It aims at bringing technology and knowledge to the rural areas, so that they are benefited. The main objective of the meet is to introduce technology on contract farming,” he said.

“For the last several decades, we gave priority for only production. The post harvesting technology was neglected. If the post harvesting method is given importance, then shelf life of perishable commodities can be increased,” Dr VasanthKumar said and added that there is a need to link infrastructure with processing and marketing to find a solution to the problems in agriculture sector.

“We have not commercialised our technology to make our ethnic products to capture the market,” he added.

The Karnataka agri-business policy will give a holistic approach to agriculture.
The policy ensures several programmes to protect the interest of farmers, fishermen, growers, rural community, and SME sectors. Before implementing the objectives of the policy and holding the meet, a series of stakeholders’ consultations are planned across the State, he informed.

KCCI President G G Mohandas Prabhu, Vice-President, Latha Kini, FKCCI Senior President J R Bangera were present.

Curtain raiser on June 8

A curtain raiser for global agri-business and food processing meet will be held on June 8 at Bangalore, in which Chief Minister B S Yeddyurappa will unveil the website of the meet, said department of Agriculture and Food Processing Additional Secretary Dr Vasanthkumar. Minister for Agriculture and Foreign Trade of Netherlands with 40 delegates will take part in the programme. The Netherlands will give priority to invest in horticulture sector while Norway will invest in Fisheries and France in dairy and wines. 

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