Zonal director of Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR),Dr A M Narualla has advised farmers to invest in processing instead of buying more land as this would increase their income manifolds.
Speaking on the inauguration of a three-day training programme on micro-processing and packaging of fruits and vegetables here,he said,A huge section of the country want graded and packaged food. But the market has not been tapped due to lack of packaging and processing facilities at the village level. There are several technologies available which could be adopted at the village level.
Giving example of his experience at Russia,he said,I saw vegetable vendor selling washed potatoes at double the cost in Moscow than unwashed. I discovered so much price difference was because of less availability of labor in that country, he said,adding that in India farm sector was also facing shortage of labour. This could only be taken care of by fast mechanization of processing and packaging, he said,advising subject matter specialists to create awareness in their respective areas.
The labour of farmers go waste if the products are not handled properly after harvest, he said. If we take the processing industry to villages it would solve many problems, said Director,CIPHET,Dr R T Patil.