The food processing sector is an important industry in India in terms of output and employment. India is ranked 12th in the world in exports of food and food products in 2015. In India, the food sector has emerged as a high-growth and high-profit sector.
The CII (Confederation of Indian Industry) Food Summit is scheduled to take place at Hotel Le Meriden, Kochi, on 18-19 December 2018. The theme of the event is Made in Kerala, Going Global. The summit will play a major role in attracting tourism to Kerala and also help in showcasing the authentic cuisine of the state.
The objective of the summit is to encourage and motivate food processing industries and food start-ups in India to work at competitive global standards, maintain food safety and quality. Larger exports will also lead to greater employment opportunities in the food processing sector.
The Summit will also provide a platform for start-ups in the food processing industry to pitch their ideas to the leaders and venture capitalists. It will help and support young entrepreneurs, especially women entrepreneurs from the bakery and catering industry, to scale up and identify the opportunities in the food industry. This will improve the competency and establish the connectivity with the service providers through exhibitors.
Delegations from Africa and Germany will also be present at the Summit. The Food Summit will be inaugurated by V S Sunil Kumar, minister for agriculture, Government of Kerala.
The Summit will witness an exclusive interaction with Anupam Dutta, former managing director, Kellogg South Africa and Southern Africa, who will address on brand building and share his expertise on the turnaround of big brands.
The Summit will have sessions related to Developing Raw Material Sources in Kerala for Food Processing; Tapping Overseas Market: Country Specific Regulations and Entry Strategies; Emerging Food Business and Service Models; Innovations in Food Processing; Affordable Waste Management in Food Industries, Support Eco-system for Food Processing Industries in India: Policies, Schemes, Subsidies and Venture Capital, and Best Practices of Marketing and Distribution.
The key speakers at the Summit will include Navas Meeran, chairman, Eastern Group; Chindi Vasudevappa, vice-chancellor, National Institute of Food Technology Entrepreneurship and Management (NIFTEM); Kalyan Sivalenka, founder and managing director, Springforth; Chuck Bird, senior director, Food Safety Product Management and Marketing, Neogen Corp; R Ajayakumar Varma, executive director, Suchitwa Mission; A S Bijulal, managing director, Meat Products of India Ltd (MPI); Sameer K Mohamed, managing director, Jaleel Holdings LLC; Manish Pande, joint director and head, PAD Division, Quality Council of India; Faraz Javeed, senior director, Abad Fisheries (Wild Fish), and K S M S Raghavarao, director, CSIR–CFTRI.
Kerala has always been a leader state in food processing and is the largest producer of rubber, pepper, coconut and coir. The state, with the aid of Kerala Industrial Infrastructure Development Corporation (KINFRA), has played a pivotal role in boosting the food industry in the country for the past two decades.
KINFRA has established five food parks. Two of these are in Malappuram district, while the others are in Ernakulam, Alappuzha and Pathanamthitta. The KINFRA Mega Food Park, when complete, will create employment for about 2,000 persons and benefit about 50,000 fishermen directly and indirectly.
CII, with a long term vision in food processing, has conducted several workshops, conferences and training to help the existing industries to scale up.