Himachal Pradesh Government has constituted State-level unit under National Food Processing Mission (NFPM). This was disclosed by Kishan Kapoor, Industries Minister while addressing first meeting of the National Food Processing Development Council organised by Ministry of Agriculture, Government of India at New Delhi today.

Kishan Kapoor said that the State had constituted the State-level Committee under the Mission and deputed Director, Industries as State Mission Director. He said that a separate ‘Head of Account’ had been created for seeking financial assistance from Central Government.

He said that the processing capacity of 150 agriculture and fruit based units was one lakh metric tonnes and added that the State Government was encouraging packaging, storage warehouse and cold storage units for processing fruit and vegetable produce. He said that the State was producing 14 lakh metric tonnes foodgrains annually besides 13.50 lakh metric tonnes potato, ginger and other cash crops. He said that the State registered 11 lakh metric tonnes vegetable production besides 6.30 lakh metric tonnes fruit production.

Industries Minister urged the Central Government for cent percent central assistance under the Mission keeping in view the limited financial resources of the State Governments and added that the Mission was being implemented on 75:25 ratio by the Central and State Governments. He urged for uniform parameters for all hill States under the Scheme.

Kapoor also urged for capital investment grant for food processing industries under the Mission besides interest grant on working loan in order to improve the financial condition of these industries. He also requested for enhancement in grant of capital investment and working capital interest from 6 to 9 percent for eight years.

He urged for administrative grant for implementing this Mission and requested for Budget for constituting the administrative infrastructure and urged for simplification of the implementation procedure.