Category — Agriculture

India’s Shrimp Exports Surge Due to Bumper Harvest

According to a report by Globefish, a unit within the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization, the seafood export value from India is expected to reach $2.3 billion — a growth of 41 percent this year. The abundant vannamei shrimp harvest in India will boost India’s seafood export performance in 2017, along with that of Chile.


FIS reports that significant import growth is forecast for the South East Asian emerging markets in particular, while the traditional “big three” comprising the United States, EU and Japan will all see a surge in seafood demand due to improving economic conditions. The value of world trade in fish and fishery products is expected to increase by a projected 5.8 percent to $150.9 billion in 2017.

The top five shrimp exporters  in 2016 were India, Vietnam, Ecuador, Indonesia and Thailand.

October 29, 2017   No Comments

India’s Food Safety Regulator Eases Business Policies

To facilitate ease of doing business, state-owned Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) put in place procedures to simplify licensing and registration processes:

  • It developed an online Food Licensing and Registration System in all states, (except in Nagaland) as also at airports, seaports and in India’s railway systems.
  • Working in collaboration with the national Center for Good Governance, FSSAI developed forms  that are now much simpler than before.
  • Inspection of premises before issuing licenses has been waived by the authority.
  • FSSAI will strengthen its customer care cell and make it available throughout the day for consumer complaints, food import clearance issues, food registration and licensing issues, and any other related queries.
  • FSSAI approved a policy to accept Codex standards where there are no government guidelines in place, while concurrently initiating the exercise of aligning its standards with Codex.
  • FSSAI simplified food import clearances: It integrated its Food Import Clearance System with the Indian Customs and Central Excise gateway, enabling a food importer to file an application on the Single Window Interface to Facilitate Trade or SWIFT System.

Food Import Clearance Process:

File Application on SWIFT ->Document Scrutiny->Inspection & Sampling->Samples to Lab->Lab Test Report-> No Objection or Non Conformance Certificate ->Transmit NOC/NCC online to SWIFT->Authorities decide on release of consignment

  • For importing food into India the importer must have a valid FSSAI License and the Import-Export Code from the Directorate General of Foreign Trade.
  • Currently FSSAI is present at 6 places in India: Chennai, Kolkata, Mumbai, Delhi, Cochin and Tuticorn.
  • In the case of food items with a very short shelf life, (such as fresh fruit and processed cheese) FSSAI will issue a Provisional No Objection Certificate immediately.
  • To eliminate the current practice of multiple sampling and testing from the same cargo, and to facilitate import clearance, FSSAI now allows one homogeneous sample to be drawn from commingled cargo of pulses, cereals and oils for multiple importers at the first port of discharge. The analysis report of the sample at the first port of discharge will remain valid at other ports of discharge.


October 23, 2017   No Comments

India’s Food Regulator Issues Guidelines on Organic Food

The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India published a regulatory framework  to  ensure  the authenticity of foods that are labeled as ‘organic.’

According to the Food  Safety  and  Standards  (Organic  Foods) Regulations, 2017, no person or business may manufacture, pack, sell, offer for sale, market, or otherwise distribute or import any organic foods unless they comply with the requirements laid down under these regulations.

1) Any food offered or promoted for sale as ‘organic food’ shall comply with all the provisions of one of the following:

a) The National Program for Organic Production – this body is administered by the Government  of India to promote organic farming in the country. Among its many mandates are:

  • being the nodal quality control laboratory for analyzing organic fertilizers
  • revising standards and testing protocols
  • providing financial assistance  for agro-waste compost production units, bio-fertilizers/bio-pesticides production units
  • development and implementation of quality control regimes
  • promoting organic farming in the country through technical capacity building of all the stakeholders including human resource development, transfer of technology, promotion and production of quality organic and biological inputs

b) The Participatory Guarantee System for India – This is a part of an internationally applicable organic quality assurance system called the Participatory Guarantee System. The system certifies organic products that maintain quality standards, including ensuring that the cultivation and production process is done according to standards stipulated for organic products. The products are certified as organic in the form of a documented logo or a statement.

c) Any other system or standards as may be notified by the Food Authority from time to time.

2) The regulation mandates that all organic foods carry accurate  information on the  organic status  of the produce as well as a certification mark or a quality assurance mark given by recognized certification bodies.

3) Food marketed through direct sale by the original producer or producer organization to the end  consumer is exempted from verification compliance; however, this exemption does not apply to processed organic products.

4) All organic foods will need to comply with the packaging and labeling requirements specified under the Food Safety and Standards (Packaging and Labeling) Regulations, 2011.

5) Any seller of organic food either exclusively or as part of their retail merchandise is required to display such food in a manner distinguishable from the display of conventional food.

6) To establish the organic integrity of any food produce in question, investigations will be conducted up to the producer level.

7) Organic food imports will be permitted under bilateral or multilateral agreements on the basis  of  equivalence of standards between the National Program for Organic Production and the organic standards of the respective exporting countries; in such cases the products/produce will not need to be
re-certified on import to India

8)  All  imported organic food consignments will need to be accompanied  by a transaction certificate  issued  by  an Accredited Certification Body covered under the terms of the equivalence agreement.

Organically farmed fields

October 19, 2017   No Comments

India’s Cold-Chain Infrastructure Looks Up

According to Ravichandran Purushothaman, president of Danfoss Industries, the Indian arm of the Nordborg, Denmark-headquartered Danfoss, the company is riding a boom in India’s cold-chain infrastructure.

Purushothaman, told Business Line, “The heart of the cold chains is with us,” noting that Danfoss’ cold-chain-related business grew between 20 and 25 per cent since 2014. “There is no recession in this industry,” he added.

In the past 3 years, India added over 4.5 million tons of cold-chain capacity. Today, the cold chain infrastructure is a $16 billion industry in India and is growing at 20 percent. Danfoss says that India has 6,300 cold-storage facilities — two-thirds of which are in the states of Uttar Pradesh and West Bengal —  with a capacity to hold 30 million tons of products.

Danfoss' Factory in Chennai

Danfoss’ Factory in Chennai

The country needs about 60,000 packhouses close to the farmlands where agricultural produce can be brought, cleaned, graded, and stored in cold rooms for a few days until they are dispatched to the markets, as well as 10,000 ‘ripening chambers’, where fruits can be ripened safely and scientifically.

October 8, 2017   No Comments

India Seeks to Upgrade its Food Processing Ecosystem

India seeks to partner with companies in the food processing ecosystem in the U.S. to incorporate best practices into its food value chain.
Ahead of the mega ‘World Food India‘ trade show in New Delhi from November 3-5, 2017, India’s minister for the food processing industry, Harsimrat Kaur Badal, is leading a visiting Indian delegation which met officials from companies across the food value chain in Chicago and Washington D.C.

Badal said that World Food India provides a platform to food processors, machine manufacturers, technology suppliers and refrigeration companies that are interested in expanding their footprint in newer markets. India is looking at partnering with those companies to upgrade Indian systems and technologies, she added.

Food processing

India has a $600 billion retail sector, of which 70 percent is food retail. This figure set to increase three times by 2020, reports the Economic Times.

October 8, 2017   No Comments