• Cooling India
  • Mar 15, 2017

“Govt need to formulate policy on cold chain industry”

The Federation of Cold Storage Associations of India (FCAOI) is all India association with members in most of the states in the country. There is a huge need for cold storage facilities in India leading to the formation of state level associations who look after their concerns. Mahendra Swarup, President, Federation of Cold Storage Associations of India, hopes that the Government’s plans for setting up 100 new cold chains will help Indian cold chain industry in future in an interaction with Cooling India.

What are the services provided by Federation of Cold Storage Associations of India?

We are bringing member states of the Federation together by informing them about the developments in each state. This may be in technology, expansion in cold storage capacity, making efforts in other groups of the cold supply chain. Also market information is provided to members so that they may adjust themselves as per the stock position.

What are challenges faced by Indian Cold Storage industry? What kind of infrastructure would you suggest for the industry in order to reduce food, grain or crop losses?

We are facing the basic challenge of electricity. Either there is very less power or very expensive power. Apart from this, power supply in most parts of India is not a quality power like excess of interruptions, low or high voltage and sometimes changing frequency. The cold chain industry has to equip itself with a developed logistics of refrigerated vans. Publicity is needed to spread awareness among people for purchasing goods stored in cold storages. At present Indian population is not market friendly with stocks stored in cold storages.

How do you envisage the growth of Indian cold storage industry with the government’s plans of setting up of 100 new cold chains of Rs 12,000 crore to Rs 13,000 crore?

The Government’s plans for setting up 100 new cold chains will help Indian cold chain industry in future.

What are technological innovations introduced by the Federation in order to preserve fruits, vegetables or grains? What innovations would you like to bring in the industry in order to make it globally competitive?

Now-a-days, ripening plants for bananas, mangoes, etc have come up. Vegetables like carrots, onions are being stored. Food grains like pulses, rice, wheat, spices are stored and their quantity is being maintained. At present, we don’t have any global competitor in India. Despite the fact, we are offering our services at cheapest rates in India. We are charging less as compared to China or other countries. The development in cold storage industry has gained momentum with setting up of lot of clod storage projects in the country.

What are the projects of cold storage under implementation?

Approximately 100 new cold storages are coming up in Uttar Pradesh, 40 in Gujarat, 30 in Madhya Pradesh, 15 in West Bengal and approximately 15 in Bihar. Other states are also in the midst of developing cold storages.

What are your expectations from the government in terms of policy, financial aid?

Government should formulate a National Policy on Cold Chain Industry. Need to pass on special incentives in power rates and substantial subsidy for solar power generation.

What is your advice to the cold storage industry professionals?

Future for the cold storage industry is very bright. Cold storages need to equip themselves with latest technologies, maintain with the insulation quality and control on expenses on power. By this they may be controlling their total expenses and be competitive in the market.