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India should aim for quantum jump in agro-processing: Goyal

India should not get satisfied with 10 to 20 per cent growth rate in agro-processing but should aim for a quantum jump to truly improve lives of the country’s farmers, Railways Minister Piyush Goyal said on Sunday.

“I think we should not rest on the laurels of numbers. 10 or 20 per cent cent growth in agro-processing or 8 per cent growth in credit finance frankly doesn’t impress me at all.

“We have to look at a quantum jump. And that quantum jump is what will help this industry make good returns and good profits,” Goyal said at the World Food India 2017 here.

He added that there was a huge opportunity in the agro-processing sector in India.

“We should look at our industry where we can create different income generating and profit making models models of finance and business, and to scale up food processing 10 times in next five years.

“If we keep that kind of ambitious goal ahead of us – a 10 times growth in food processing sector in India — we will truly become growth engines of the economy,” Goyal said.

The Minister added that the time had come for the food processing technology to go directly to the farmers and actively engage them, while the government’s role should be that of a facilitator and it should not act as an impediment, by over-regulating the industry beyond a point.

“We need to understand how to scale up this industry with innovative ideas, economies of scale, financing and technology,” he said.

He said there was a need for indigenous solutions in food-processing sector while ensuring quality and safety standards.