Chandigarh, March 30, 2020 (Yes Punjab News)
Union food processing industries minister Harsimrat Kaur Badal today assured industry representatives that a dedicated Task Force had been established to resolve all problems being faced by the food processing and ancillary industries in the current lockdown.
In a video conference with major industry associations such as CII, FICCI, ASSOCHAM, PHDCCI, AIFPA, ICC, FINER and DICCI, the Union minister said the Task Force included all senior officials of the food processing ministry and members of Invest India. She said the team had already received 222 issues out of which 98 had been resolved and the rest were under resolution.
During the video conference, industry representatives told Mrs Harsimrat Badal that though directions had been sent to all State governments about the need for allowing the manufacturing and movement of essential items, they were being interpreted in different ways by the State governments. They stressed the need for uniform format for all States regarding manufacture and movement of food products.
The representatives also said they also faced problems related to factory shutdown, permission to operate warehouses, personnel movement and logistic disruption. The industry representatives also disclosed that required labour was not available for smooth manufacturing and that there was a shortage of transport also.
They also urged that ‘kirana stores’ be allowed to open across the country to ensure the forward linkage was established.
Mrs Badal said she would take up the suggestion to treat labour working in food industry on the pattern of frontline workers and be given an insurance cover of Rs 50 lakh. She said talks would also be initiated with the transport unions to ensure smooth supply of food material and access to raw materials by the food processing industry. She assured industry representatives that she would review all suggestions and grievances submitted by them within five days.
Nestle CMD Suresh Narayanan said the company had helped cattle rearers of Moga district by producing and processing 1.10 lakh liters of milk during the lockdown and had not let a single drop of milk go waste.