Food processing industry in state facing several challenges, says Punjab Agricultural University V-C

May 17:The first one-day Punjab AgriFood Conclave was held at Punjab Agricultural University (PAU) in Ludhiana Wednesday.
Speaking during the inaugural session, PAU vice-chancellor Dr BS Dhillon said that food processing industry and crop diversification are facing several challenges in Punjab. "Inadequate availability of raw material, inadequate post-harvest infrastructure, inadequate research and development by processing industry, fragmented value chains and policy distortions are some of the challenges that food processing industry is facing in Punjab," said Dhillon.
He also said that PAU has been continuously developing some food processing techniques to promote cultivation of fruits and vegetables but the real challenge lies in their adoption by farmers and other stakeholders. "We are developing several techniques to promote crop diversification so that farmers come out of wheat-paddy cycle. But the real challenge is their adoption. Not many farmers are adopting them because it is difficult for them to come out of wheat-paddy cycle as still there are many challenges. On one hand we are asked to push crop diversification and at the same time, we are given the wheat and paddy production cultivation targets to be met each year. So how can we expect that farmers will abandon wheat-paddy," said V-C.
He also called for developing strong linkages between PAU and industry for strengthening of food processing sector. The conclave was inaugurated by Punjab industry and commerce minister Sham Sunder Arora who said that Punjab which till now is known as 'Food Bowl of India' will soon be known as 'Food Processing Hub of India' too. Agencies
Source: Agencies



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