Tragedy with Management in India ( Facts: Hard to Digest)
1.Over 10 lakh tonnes of food grains worth several hundred crores of rupees, which could have fed over one crore hungry people for a year, were damaged in Food Corporation of India (FCI) godowns during the last one decade
( Responsible for procurement and distribution of food grains across the country)
2.The damages were suffered despite the FCI spending Rs 242 crore while trying to prevent any loss of food grains during storage. Ironically another 2.59 crore was spent just to dispose off the rotten food grains.
3. The FCI informed that 1.83 lakh tonnes of wheat, 3.95 lakh tonnes of rice, 22 thousand tonnes of paddy and 110 tonnes of maize were damaged between 1997 to 2007.
4. Far from maximising the utilisation of its agricultural produce; the government estimates that on an average 15-30 per cent of the country’s food gets damaged while on its way from the farm to the fork.
5. Quoting a 2007 report by Rabo India Finance, the Agriculture Ministry admitted last year that Rs 58,000 crore worth of agricultural food items get wasted every year because of lack of refrigerated transport and cold storage facilities.
6. Vision 2025 of the Central Institute of Post Harvest Engineering and Technology (CIPHET) has more detailed data. It notes that overall, every year there are post harvest losses to the tune of 10-40 per cent depending upon the commodity.
7. The CIPHET believes fruits are the worst hit. While India is the second largest producer of fruits in the world, CIPHET estimates that 25-40 per cent of the total production of fruits is lost due to spoilage at various post-harvest stages, thus the per capita availability of fruits is reduced to around 80g per day which is almost half the requirements for a balanced diet.
8. Similarly, despite being the second largest producer of vegetables in the world (next to China), India, it is estimated loses around 20-25 per cent of its total vegetables to poor post harvest practices.
9. Not surprisingly less that 2 per cent of the total vegetables produced in the country are commercially processed as compared to 70 per cent in Brazil.