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As many as 792 projects out of 818 have been approved for setting up food processing industries by the private sector, with approved grants-in-aid of Rs 5,792 crore so far, the government informed Parliament on Friday. “Government has been consistently encouraging and incentivising increased private sector investment for the overall development of the food processing sector of the country to promote value addition in agricultural and allied sectors and reduce wastage,” Minister of the State for Food Processing Industries Prahlad Singh Patel said.

The minister in a written reply to the Rajya Sabha also said the government has recently taken three major initiatives in order to further increase private sector participation in the sector.

Firstly, the government has approved a Production Linked Incentive (PLI) scheme for the food processing sector with an outlay of Rs 10,900 crore to support the creation of global food manufacturing champions and support Indian brands of food products in international markets.

Secondly, the government is implementing the Pradhan Mantri Formalisation of Micro food processing Enterprises Scheme to provide financial, technical and business support for up-gradation/setting up of two lakh micro food processing units based on the One District One Product (ODOP) approach in a period of five years from 2020-21 to 2024-25 with an outlay of Rs 10,000 crore.

And thirdly, the government in the budget speech for 2021-22 had announced the expansion of the scope of the Operation Greens scheme from tomato, onion and potato (TOP) to 22 perishable products to boost value addition in agriculture and allied products and their exports.

That apart, the government is implementing a central scheme Pradhan Mantri Kisan Sampada Yojana (PMKSY) from 2016-17 for overall growth and development of the food processing sector, mostly through private sector participation, the minister said.

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