Modi hard sells India's traditional foods

Modi hard sells India's traditional foods

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday invited investments in contract farming and post-harvest infrastructure.

With global and domestic business heads in attendance, Modi also sought to hard sell India's traditional food at a time when the world is battling with lifestyle diseases.

"The combination of traditional Indian food, with modern technology, processing and packaging, can help the world rediscover the health benefits, and refreshing taste of ingredients such as turmeric, ginger, and tulsi, to name just a few," Modi said inaugurating the World Food India 2017.

"Starting a new business in India is now easier than ever before," Modi said adding that his government had simplified procedures for obtaining clearances from various agencies, repealed archaic laws and reduced the burden of compliances.

The food processing is marked as a priority sector in Make in India initiative, he said.

"Now, 100% FDI is permitted for trading - including through e-commerce - of food products manufactured or produced in India," he said adding that the government has also lined up attractive fiscal incentives that make loans to food and agro-based processing units, and cold chains easier and cheaper to obtain.

Chief executive officers (CEOs) of global firms such as Nestle, Unilever, Metro Cash & Carry lauded India's 30 spot jump on the World Bank's 'Doing Business' index.

Food Processing Industries Minister Harsimrat Kaur Badal said she had received a commitment from global investors of investments to the tune of 10 billion dollars in the food processing sector which has the potential to create 10 lakh jobs.

Billed as the biggest congregation of global investors and business leaders of major food companies, World Food India aims to establish India as a preferred investment destination and sourcing hub for the food processing industry.

The three-day event will host over 2,000 participants and 200 companies from around 30 countries. Apart from representatives of 28 states, it will also see the participation of 18 ministerial and business delegations, nearly 50 global CEOs along with heads of all leading domestic food processing companies.

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