Published On : Fri, Aug 11th, 2017

A Divisional Conference to connect Food Processors with Farmer Producer Companies for Direct Procurement

Amravati: Divisional level Conference was organized at Amravati by Maharashtra Agricultural Competitiveness Project and its Agri Business Promotion Facility (ABPF) operated by the Grant Thornton (GT). Over 300 Farmer Producer Companies (FPCs) have been formed in the Maharashtra under the MACP, a program funded by World Bank.

The project basically aims at increasing farmer income by way of enabling larger aggregation of farmer produce, its primary value addition and sale. Various other capacity building interventions are also undertaken under the project by GT. The major objective of the conference was to build a foundation for direct transactions between farmers and processors/buyers.

The Conference was attended by Directors of about 70 FPCs formed in the Amravati Division (comprising of Amravati, Akola, Yavatmal, Washim and Buldhana districts).

From MACP and ATMA,A K Misal (Project Director, ATMA Amravati), Ganesh Jagdale (AME Amravati ATMA), Narendra Patil (AME Akola ATMA) and other key officers were present at the program. Some prospective buyers and company/association representatives like Pradeep Ghorpadefrom Indian Pulses & Grains Association, Prashant Dixit from ETG Group, MahendraKakraniafrom Kakrania Industries, Manohar Bhojwani from Dayalu Dall Mill, Suresh Bhojwani from Yash Pulses, SanjivKeshava and Santosh Raut from OREM (SERVIER’s collection partner for Maharashtra State), RushabhJain from Jai Pulses, Lucky Agrawal &MayurCuhmbhalkar from LM Dry fruits, SagarKhalokarfrom 24K Amravati Honey, Mr. Swapnil from Patanjali and RiteshJuneja from Global Foods were present at the conference.

Industry representatives presented their requirements in terms of raw material needs. Notably, dal mill industry participants expressed that they are interested in direct procurement of Maruti variety Tur, chana and other pulses from FPCs, considering such raw material will be cleaned and graded at the Common facility Centers already setup by these FPCs. Better rates than prevailing market rates can be easily offered if the quality is as per specifications. Pradeep Ghorpade, IPGA expressed that their association seeks to address issues that impact production, productivity and marketability of pulses in the country.

He expressed that he was happy to know the setting up of FPCs in Maharashtra which will enable farmers to gain through joint efforts. He further said that their association shall create a special cell to involve FPO membership to avail them with best possible support in their activities. Lucky Agrawal &MayurCuhmbhalkar, dynamic entrepreneurs involved in cashew processing at Washim expressed their requirement of raw cashew form FPCs formed in Sindhudurg region. RiteshJuneja expressed that his company looks to connect with the FPCs in Bhandara region for contract farming of green peas. Swapnil from Patanjali expressed their proposition on contract farming and buyback of some medicinal herbs.

Interestingly, representatives from OREM presented their requirement for aborted small oranges. They stated that their purpose of interacting with Orange Producing FPOs of Amravati is to explore direct procurement of aborted Small Orangesthat do not grow into edible oranges and fall onto the ground in farms.After the flowering of the orange trees, the flowers become small fruits, and only one in about five to six of these small fruits will eventually develop into an edible orange. The remaining four to five will remain small and drop off: these are called aborted small oranges, and are very rich in Flavonoide. Since, currently none of the farmers in the region get any value realization of such aborted oranges, such procurement means additional income to orange growers.

The program was also graced by several experts who assisted the present FPO representatives on various matters related to their company operations. CA SubhashRahangdaleand his team presented on various ROC compliances that need to be done by Producer Companies for smooth operations. Shri S. S. Muddamwar, GM-DIC Amravati presented on various State schemes including Package Scheme of Incentives which FPOs can leverage upon. Similarly, CA YashwantBhojwani, Senior Consultant-Grant Thornton spoke on various other schemes of Center and State that both FPCs and individual food processors can take benefit of. CA SaurabhPuniyani addressed questions of FPC representatives and Industry representatives related to Imran Sheikh from Mahindra Trringo presented on how FPCs can benefit from their tractor and farm equipment rental services business.

Mr. Kumar from Samunnati Finance and JitendraHarkakha from Bank of Baroda made presentation on their loan assistance schemes specially designed for FPCs. YashwantAglave from Mahindra Samriddhi presented on their input assistance program for FPCs.