Mangalore: ‘Fenny, Neera policies await govt nod’

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  • ‘Major drawback of the coastal districts is lack of cold storage and warehouse facilities’

Mangalore, 08 April 2010: Principal Secretary to the Government in the Food Processing and Harvest Technology R Suresh said the initiative to extract fenny from cashew apple in the State is awaiting the Excise Department’s clearance.

Addressing media persons at Zilla Panchayat here on Wednesday, he said the fenny policy is ready, but it is awaiting the Excise Department’s nod.

It can be mentioned here that Karnataka is one of the prominent cashew producers of the country, and 90 per cent of its production comes from the coastal districts, i.e., Dakshina Kannada and Udupi. Cashew is cultivated on an estimated 66,683 hectares of land in the State with an annual cashew production of 89,000 tonnes.
Suresh also said the proposal for producing ‘Neera’ from coconut is also anticipating the government’s approval.

He said Karnataka contributes 10 per cent of India’s total fruit and vegetable production but unfortunately only 2 pc is processed. Our intention is to increase this to at least 5 pc in the days to come, he said and added that many food processing units are also facing the problem of lack of raw materials. The Principal Secretary said the major drawback of the coastal districts is lack of cold storage and warehouse facilities. “It is important to have proper arrangements for storage while increasing the production. Mangalore has only one cold storage, that too is of a private agency,” he regretted.
He also informed that six food parks are being set up in Bangalore (rural), Tumkur, Davangere, Shimoga, Belgaum and Bijapur at a subsidy of Rs 8 crore. A mega food park at a subsidy of Rs 50 crore had been proposed in Chikmagalur, but it may be cancelled, he noted.

Under its 11th Five Year Plan, the Central government intends to modernise street food, by providing subsidy to the interested, he added.

Rs 50 lakh for abattoirs
Suresh said the Union government under its 11th Plan would give Rs 50 lakh subsidy to those who come forward to set up abattoirs. When asked about the scope of the scheme in a State where Anti Cow Slaughter Act is in force, he said he could not comment on the “controversial issue” but one can make use of the scheme.

DC, CEO’s absence irks principal secy
It is for the second consecutive time the Principal Secretary left Dakshina Kannada without conducting the scheduled review meeting. He had visited the district in June last, but did not conduct the meet since “nobody organised the meeting for him”.
On Wednesday, he said, he was not conducting the review meet since Deputy Commissioner and ZP Chief Executive Officer were absent. “I’m going to write to the Chief Minister regarding this. I had informed them 10 days in advance. But nobody is here to take part in the review. The district administration is careless and uninterested,” he said.

Additional DC S A Prabhakar Sharma who was present on the occasion informed that the DC was on some urgent inspection works, while the CEO had been to a training programme for panchayat development officers.

However, Suresh proceeded to Udupi, while other officials simply returned.


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