Common Food Processing Incubation Center for Shallots, Perambalur
Union Minister for Food Processing Industries Harsimrat Kaur Badal said that it is a historic & auspicious occasion for Tamil Nadu and Chettikulam village in particular...
Harsimrat Kaur Badal, Union Minister for Food Processing Industries launched Common Food Processing Incubation Center for Shallots (Small Onions) in Chettikulam village in Perambalur district of Tamil Nadu through video conferencing recently. Speaking on the occasion Harsimrat Kaur Badal said that it is a historic & auspicious occasion for Tamil Nadu and Chettikulam village in particular. She also congratulated Indian Institute of Food Processing Technology (IIFPT), Thanjavur for their initiatives to help double farmers’ income by 2022. She also said that farmers in Perambalur district are producing 70,000 tons of shallots per year in a cultivation area of 8000 hectares, in spite of increasing difficulty in cultivation due to increase in prices of inputs, unpredictable weather, disease outbreak and not getting adequate prices in the market. This Central Processing Center for Shallots in Perambalur will ensure that no shallots are getting wasted, increase farmers’ income and also ensures availability of shallots to consumers. This onion processing technology should be taken to all parts of India.
C Anandharamakrishnan, Director, Indian Institute of Food Processing Technology said that his Institute has decided to take one crop per year and develop processing technologies and related infrastructure for that crop. In this regard Mission Banana was implemented in the previous year and this year it is Mission Onion. Central Food Processing Center for Shallots in Chettikulam, Perambalur District is part of the Mission Onion in improving the lives of Onion farmers in this area. This center will help farmers’ to double their income through value addition. This center will process Shallots and produce 4 Shallot products viz. Fresh Shallot, Peeled Shallot, Onion Powder, Onion Paste, and Onion Flakes. He also said that IIFPT is working on Mission Coconut which will be launched next year on World Coconut Day (2nd September 2018).
Perambalur district is the hub for small onions (Shallots) cultivation in over 8000 hectares producing around 65,000 to 70,000 tonnes every year. Farmers reported massive losses due to conventional methods of handling and storage. Stakeholders from this region expressed their need to provide technological solutions to minimize wastage, particularly, during seasons with surplus production. The farmer producers union which will be involved in this initiative was also launched recently.
IIFPT has developed three machines viz,
Onion Stem & Root Cutter
Small Onion Peeler
Solar Assisted Curing cum Storage Unit for Onions
This Center will make four value added products
Vacuum Packed Peeled Onion
Benefits of the Value addition created
Reduction of storage losses
Ease of handling
Shelf life extension
Increase in income generation
Wider market coverage for local farmers
More jobs created
Even with proper storage and handling, unprocessed small onions last only upto 15 days and even lesser when stored after peeling. But with the value addition, Onion powder will last for 6 months, Onion Paste for five months, Vacuum Packed Peeled Onion for 1 month (under refrigeration), and Onion Flakes for six months. Thus, it increases shelf life and farmers get better prices for their produce.