The commerce ministry has given its in-principal approval to 10 projects proposed by the Indian Institute of Packaging (IIP) with an investment of Rs 100 crore. These would be taken up in the 12th Five Year Plan, according to JK Dadoo, joint secretary, commerce and industry ministry.
“As of now, these proposals are kind of approved in-principle. We need to find funding for them now,” he said.
The 10 projects include two new IIPs at Guwahati and Ahmedabad, faculty upgradation scheme, construction of food packaging laboratory, setting up of flexible intermediate bulk container testing facility and expansion of existing IIPs.
The Indian packaging industry is about $17 billion and growing at 15 per cent year-on-year. It is expected to grow at 18 per cent in the coming years to reach $40 billion by 2015. The growth will largely be driven by food consumption, which is expected to touch $ 240 billion by 2013, he said.
According to him, the demand for different types of packaging in the consumer goods sector has been growing phenomenally. Large supermarkets and malls have driven this growth even further.
Innovative packaging solutions are the only way to maximise customer satisfaction in this sector. Specific application areas are cut fruits and vegetables, dairy products, meat products and sweets, which require to be put in ready-to-serve containers to enhance large-scale marketability, Dadoo said.
The potential of packaging is yet to be tapped in rural and youth markets and the challenges faced by the industry needs to be addressed, said Sanjay Bhatia, chairman of IIP. The major challenges include meeting the demand for packaged food products.
In India, there are about 600-700 packaging machinery manufacturers who are in the small and medium sector, Dadoo said at the inaugural function of Indpack-2011, a two-day event of packaging industry, here.