CSIR plans food processing plants to control waste: DG

Dignitaries release a souvenir during inaugural ceremony of the seventh Bioprocessing India Conference at Central Food Technological Research Institute in Mysuru on Saturday. Director General (DG), the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR)

Shekhar C Mande, Director General (DG), the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR), New Delhi, on Saturday said that the institution has come up with an idea to minimise the wastage of foodgrain by the establishment of food processing plants.

In a press conference here, he said that the country has been cultivating the excess amount of foodgrain and a large quantity is being wasted due to various reasons.

The DG said, “A large quantity of Pineapple fruit are being wasted in Meghalaya due to lack of transport facility and processing the fruits will be a solution for it. The processing plants are planned at each district in the state.”

Potash from Spent-Wash

CSIR has developed a technology to extract potash from spent-wash, waste that is generated during the process of sugarcane. The spent-wash is highly pollutant as the percentage of potassium is very high. Potash is much required in the agriculture sector and the country used to import potassium. “Now, we have successfully extracted potassium from spent-wash,” the DG said.

Precision farming

With the ‘Precision farming’, farmers can find solutions for crop management. It is a modern farming technique that help farmers on supplying nutrients, water, seed and other agricultural inputs to be applied using GPS and GNSS technique.

Aroma Mission

Aroma mission encourages farmers to cultivate crops of high economical value like menthol mint, lemongrass, lavender, palmarosa and others. The cultivation of these crops are promoted for essential oils that are in high demand in the aroma industry. The motto of this mission is to enhance the production and export of these essential oils, the DG said.

Floriculture & Honey Mission

Floriculture mission is producing agarbathi by using flowers which were used in temples. The DG said, “There is a plan to produce agarbathi by collecting flowers used at temples such as Shirdi, Tirupati and others.”

Honey mission is promoting use of honey as substitute of sugar. Honey has many medicinal qualities and it can be used instead of sugar. CSIR has joined hands with Khadi and Village Industries Commission (KVIC) for the promotion of honey production, he said.

Aircraft

CSIR-National Aerospace Laboratories (NAL) is developing a 19-seater indigenous light transport aircraft ‘Saras Mk2’ and NAL has plans for a 70-seater aircraft in the years to come.

Earlier in the day, seventh Bioprocessing India Conference was inaugurated. Mande inaugurated the event in the presence of Professor Gautam R Desiraju, Solid State and Structural Chemistry Unit, IISc Bengaluru, IISc Bengaluru Deputy Director Jayant Modak and others.

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