February 9, 2012 admin

Food processing industry need be on automation: Dr Prashad

Two-day national workshop on nondestructive methods for quality evaluation inaugurated at CIPHET
Ludhiana, February 9: “Automation of the food processing industry is the need of the hour and without this we cannot compete in international scenario,” these remarks were made by the Dr Suresh Prashad, Professor at Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Patna, on the inaugural of the National Workshop on the  NAIP Sub-Project “Development of Nondestructive Systems for Evaluation of Microbial and Physico-Chemical Parameters of Mango” here today at the Central Institute of Post Harvest Engineering and Technology (CIPHET), Ludhiana.
Notably, the meeting was aimed to evaluate achievements of the project and provide an interactive platform for scientists working on the non-destructive techniques in the project and other institutions. Under this project, a numbers of technologies have been developed for assessing the quality of mangoes without cutting by using infrared and X-Ray technologies. This is expected to help farmers and entrepreneurs especially engaged in exports for knowing quality of consignment in shortest possible time.  On the occasion, a book on ‘Safety and working procedures in food analyst lab’ was also released.
Addressing the scientists, Dr Prashad said that the technologies developed under this project will help us to know whether the mango fruit is mature or not. “When I visited Japan in year 1972 amazed to see a rice milling plant. I saw that on one side trucks of rice were unloaded and other side of the plant boxes of packaged rice were coming out, and only one manager was running the entire show,” sharing this experience, he emphasized the need of automation in Indian food processing industry. Terming the project on mango very crucial, Director CIPHET Dr R.K Gupta hoped with evaluation of the fruits by non-destructive methods, we would have better processed products.
Dr S.N  Jha, Head AS&EC Division and Principal Investigator of the Project, said that when some Indian consignment was rejected abroad. “The loss is not only financial. But of credibility,” he said, adding that non-destructive methods when introduced in industry will help in solving this problem. Dr D.C Joshi, Dean, Anand Agriculture University, Anand, said that benefits would be immense to Gujarat as just one prominent district corporative society is doing Rs 300 crore of mango trade every year.
Saying that lack of focus on post harvest sector is leading to the losses, Prof E.S Rajagopal, Senior Scientist, Indian Institute of Science (IIS), Bangalore, said that lot more need to be done for ensuring that technologies developed under this project reaches to stakeholders. While Dr Abhijit Kar of Indian Agricultural Research Institute (IARI), New Delhi, shared his experience about the project, Dr Nachiket Kotwaliwale proposed a vote of thanks. Senior Scientists Dr K. Narsaiah and Dr Pranita Jaiswal and scientists from across country were also present on the occasion.

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