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Agri & processed food export to set record

Commerce ministry takes initiatives to promote agri products in European countries for better realisation

Dilip Kumar Jha  |  Mumbai 

Agricultural and processed food exports from India are likely to set a record this financial year, despite unfavourable global economic sentiment.

These exports had already surpassed last year’s annual figure in the first 10 months of the current financial year, witnessing a strong demand for India’s ready-to-eat and raw food products from foreign Data compiled by the Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority (Apeda) showed India’s agri and processed foods exports shot up 63 per cent to set a record at Rs 101,504 crore in the first 10 months of 2012-13, as compared to Rs 62,244 crore in the corresponding period of last year.

“Overall exports of agri and processed foods might surpass Rs 125,000 crore by the end of this financial year,” said a senior Apeda official.

Cereals constituted a little over 40 per cent of India’s overall shipment in this sector. Commodities such as dried and preserved vegetables, mango pulp and pulses also recorded a sharp jump.

Echoing a similar response, Dietmar Eiden, Vice President (Trade Fair Management), Koelnmesse GmbH, the organizer of world’s largest event, Anuga 2013 scheduled to be held between October 5-9 in Cologne, Germany, in agri and processed food sectors, said: “An unfavourable global economic climate is unlikely to hurt consumer demand for food and agri products. That’s the reason we have got overwhelming response from Indian food and agri exporters, who have already set their foothold in European countries and want to strengthen their presence.”

The commerce ministry took initiatives to promote India’s agri and processed food products in European countries in recent years, boosting India’s significance in Anuga events. Exports of these products haven’t been hit by the unfavourable global economic sentiment. As a result, these exports has risen ten-fold in four years, from Rs 11,178 crore in 2009-10.

Trade shows like Anuga has helped Indian exporters tremendously to target their consumers in European countries where realization is understandably much higher than that in Indian Hence, more and more companies are interested in participating in such trade shows resulting into exhibitors ramping up from 29 in 2001 to 112 in 2011. This year, however, this number would go further up, Eiden added.

In Europe, Germany continues to remain a major destination for rice products, coffee, dried and preserved vegetables and poultry products. America is a major importer of India’s cereal preparations, guar gum, cocoa products, natural honey and milled products. Asian countries and West Asia are also major export destinations for a number of agri products.

First Published: Mon, March 25 2013. 22:35 IST