IEP Chandigarh, January 18, 2023
In consonance with the aim of CM Bhagwant Mann regarding safeguarding the farmers and environment of the state, the Minister of Food Processing Punjab Chetan Singh Jauramajra, took maiden meeting of the Department of Food Processing and reviewed the status of implementation of Centrally Sponsored Scheme ‘PM Formalization of Micro Food Processing Enterprises (PM FME)’. Manjit Singh Brar, IAS, Director-cum-Secretary, Department of Food Processing and Rajnish Tuli, General Manager attended the meeting.
The minister informed that the Department of Food Processing is the Nodal Department overseeing implementation of PMFME Scheme for which Punjab Agro is the State Nodal Agency. The aim and objective of the scheme is to enhance competitiveness of micro enterprises and promote formalization of food processing sector. The outlay for 2022-23 is Rs. 98 Cr., out of which over Rs. 68 Cr. has been booked.
Disclosing about the subsidy provided by the government he said the state has so far sanctioned 789 proposals of individual micro enterprises/farmers for up-gradation of existing and setting up of new food processing units. The total subsidy of Rs. 62 Cr. has been released/ committed. The total capital investment by these units shall be over Rs. 300 Cr. These units are processing Pickle, Murabba, Jaggery, fortified Rice, Bakery products, Honey, Cattle Feed, packaged Mushroom etc.. Punjab is the 2nd State after Maharashtra to have sanctioned that much amount of subsidy to small food processing enterprises. The micro enterprises of Bathinda, Barnala, Mansa and Sangrur districts have taken maximum benefit of the scheme. Under group category, subsidy has been sanctioned to 3 projects belonging to a FPO from Mansa, a SHG from Bathinda and a Producer Co-operative from Hoshiarpur. Their total subsidy is Rs.1.2 Cr. for capital investment of Rs. 3.43 Cr. 438 members of SHGs have been disbursed seed capital of Rs. 1.51 Cr. PAU Ludhiana has been sanctioned one common incubation center being setup at Patiala by Krishi Vigyan Kendra for processing of fruits and other crops . Pre-construction activities have been completed and the project has been estimated to cost Rs. 4 Cr. Five more such proposals for incubation centers for different products for Amritsar, Hoshiarpur, Fazilka, Sangrur and Bathinda districts are under active consideration of the Govt. of India. Over 600 beneficiaries have been imparted district level training on business and technical aspects of their projects. Awareness camps are organized at block/district level on regular basis to educate farmers /enterprises to avail benefits of the scheme. Over 70 Resource Persons have been engaged to hand hold enterprises to filling the application and obtaining loan from banks.
The Minster directed that the Department should promote more proposals for chilly, carrot & tomato processing as the same are grown in abundance in Punjab and these crops consume less water.
Director-cum-Secretary Manjit Singh Brar thanked the participants and assured the minister to successfully execute his vision to uplift the farmers.