NAFED to take Indian food products to Gulf, Europe diaspora

April 17th, 2010 - 8:42 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, April 17 (IANS) Agricultural cooperative major National Agricultural Cooperative Marketing Federation of India (NAFED) is eyeing the markets in the Gulf and Europe with food products aimed primarily at the Indian diaspora.

“There have been demands in the last several years from Indians in the Gulf and Europe to make our products available for them. We have now decided to source India-specific products, process and package them and export them to the Gulf and Europe. The prices will be competitive,” NAFED managing director C.V. Ananda Bose said here Saturday.

The NAFED move will be a boon for the huge Indian population in the Gulf and European cities like London. For the Gulf market, NAFED, the largest farmers’ cooperative in the country, will ship Kerala-specific products because of the large presence of workers from the state.

Bose said India-specific products have always been available in the Gulf and Europe, but “not in the right quality, right quantity and right price”. “NAFED has a reputation for quality. That is why we are going there,” he added.

“The first set of consignments is expected to be ready for shipping within two months. While the food products will be procured from different states, the processing and packaging will be done in Kerala from where they will be shipped to the destinations from the Kochi port,” said a NAFED statement.

The India-specific products will fall into two categories - consumer-specific products, and those meant for food service companies like restaurants and event management companies.

“We will also export flowers and vegetables to the Gulf and Europe from the Kochi international airport under a joint-venture between the central government, Kerala government and NAFED,” Bose said.

For exports to Europe, NAFED is negotiating with business houses through Indian embassies, the statement said.

NAFED’s advisor (commerce and international trade) Rajan Dhawan said though the primary focus will be on Indian immigrants in the Gulf and Europe, these will also be made available to the general population.

“In the Gulf, the focus will be on Dubai and Abu Dhabi because of their status as trading centres in the region. The NAFED products will then go to all the Gulf countries from there,” Dhawan said.

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