New Delhi, November 4, 2023: The second edition of the ‘World Food India’ commenced on November 3rd, 2023, in New Delhi. This three-day program will witness a special focus on the richness of millets as a food source, given that 2023 is being celebrated as the International Year of Millets, bringing together the global food processing industry.
Launched by the Ministry of Food Processing Industries, Government of India in 2017, the World Food India Program promotes India as a global destination for food processing and related industries. The program aims to showcase India’s strengths in food production and processing and to attract investment and collaborations in the food sector. The program emphasized the growth and development of the food processing industry in India, focusing on areas such as food production, food packaging, logistics, and infrastructure, reaffirming its status as a global platform for addressing pressing food-related challenges.
Hon’ble Prime Minister of India, Shri Narendra Modi in his inaugural speech said, “The fusion of taste and technology will pave a new way for India, giving rise to a new future and economy. Food security is one of the major challenges faced by our country, hence, the World Food India program holds more value and prominence. The agricultural export of processed food has increased from 13 percent to 23 percent. This is a golden opportunity for all companies and startups associated with the food sector. There are three important contributors to the growth of the food sector in India: small farmers, small-scale industries, and women. Women-led development in the Indian economy is driving the growth of food processing industries. India has diversity in food and this diversity is a dividend for the rest of the world.”
This year’s World Food India Program will see an impressive lineup of speakers representing diverse segments of the food industry. This stellar ensemble includes leaders, innovators, and experts from various fields who through their participation not only reflect the breadth and depth of the global food sector but also underscore the program’s commitment to fostering discussions on key issues, sharing insights, and promoting collaboration.
The World Food India program also had the distinct honor of hosting a distinguished array of dignitaries and ministers from various states whose collective presence highlighted the event’s collaborative spirit and commitment to addressing food challenges. The state of Meghalaya was represented by Dr. Mazel Ampareen Lyngdoh, Cabinet Minister, Government of Meghalaya, and Smt Isawanda Laloo, IAS, Secretary, Agriculture and Farmers’ Welfare Department, Government of Meghalaya.
While inaugurating the Meghalaya Pavilion at the event, Dr. Mazel Ampareen Lyngdoh said, “This is an important linkage for our progressive farmers and cooperative societies. The work that the Government of Meghalaya has done for so many years, gets validated on a day like today. In my brief interaction with the Agri-entrepreneurs, I was very pleased to be informed that they have achieved a highly encouraging and very high turnover. This event is an international meeting of over 14000 buyers of products, Meghalaya today has come of age, and we must thank the Department of Agriculture, officers, and everyone involved who have helped to make this possible for Meghalaya. I would also like to thank the Government of India for allowing this to happen.”
To sustain and further enhance these efforts and boost farmers’ incomes, the Meghalaya Agriculture Marketing Board has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Lulu Group, with the support of Apeda and the Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers’ Welfare, to establish a strategic partnership aimed at mutual growth and promoting agricultural products from Meghalaya in the GCC countries. Meghalaya has made significant progress in linking its farmers with international brands to add value to their products, ensuring that Meghalaya’s unique offerings gain the recognition they deserve in the global market.
With the signing of the MoU, the Agri-entrepreneurs will get the opportunity to connect with buyers, technology innovators, and institutions. This collaborative effort will not only boost the agricultural economy of Meghalaya but also promote knowledge exchange, market access, and innovation within the agricultural sector, ultimately paving the way for sustainable growth and development in the region.
The local cooperatives of Meghalaya proudly showcased a wide range of products sourced from various corners of our region, including the flavors of Meghalaya, such as turmeric, jackfruit, ginger, pineapple, and more. This demonstration of Meghalaya’s rich agricultural diversity and the entrepreneurial spirit of the cooperative societies is indeed a source of immense pride. It not only highlights the indigenous flavors that are intrinsic to the region’s culture but also demonstrates the resilience and innovation of the local communities.
The World Food India stands as a testament to the power of collaboration and the shared commitment to an India where food security and sustainable agriculture are not just aspirations but attainable realities. With diverse voices, global participation, and the rich tapestry of flavors from Meghalaya, this event has shone a spotlight on our collective journey toward a brighter, more nourished future.