The food industry is a significant part of the Indian economy, with food constituting about 30% of the consumer’s basket. India is both a large producer and consumer of food. With a vast and growing consumer base and strong production base, the food processing sector presents large and exciting business opportunity for both domestic and international players.
The broad categories which are included in Food Processing are as below:
1. Grains and cereals including rice, maize, pulses etc
2. Oils and oil seeds
3. Fruits and vegetables
4. Dairy products including milk and milk products
5. Meat, poultry and marine products
6. Commercial crops including spices like chillies, turmeric etc
7. Plantation crops including coconut, cashew etc
Keeping in view the potential benefits the food processing sector offers to all stakeholders, including producers, processors, final consumers and the government, Ministry of Food Processing Industries (MoFPI), Government of India, has initiated several policy changes to encourage and promote the food processing sector in the country through its Vision- 2015. Government of Andhra Pradesh has aligned its food processing policy with Vision - 2015 to harness the potential of food processing sector in the state.
Andhra Pradesh has been in the forefront of promoting food processing industry and had declared a separate policy for its promotion, in April 2005. The creation of a separate Department for Food Processing Industries in the state to bring a focused attention on Food Processing sector by coordinating the efforts of various departments related to the food sector was the first step in this direction.
In order to provide the organizational back up to the efforts of the Department of Food Processing Industries, Government of Andhra Pradesh has established a dedicated organization called Andhra Pradesh Food Processing Society (APFPS) which acts as a nodal agency for the implementation of various food processing related schemes and programs.