CM inaugurates cold chain facility at Lassipora
Srinagar, Oct 15: Chief Minister Omer Abdullah today inaugurated a 4200 metric ton integrated cold chain facility at Industrial Estate Lassipora, Pulwama.
The cold chain facility has been launched by Harshna Naturals, a partnership firm.
“It is a pleasure to see that a small part of my dream becoming reality. Instead of getting frightened with the international players in the market, we have to strengthen ourselves fully to be in the competition,” said Omar Abdullah at the inaugural function.
He said: “We should look for private public partnership for establishing such units. Even the government can establish such units and rent them to the growers so that they can store their fruits properly to make it available in the market in the off season as well,” he added.
“The unit is of the capacity of 4200 metric tones and we had an apple production of 12000 metric tons last year so one can guess the potential we have for such sectors here,” he said.
The facility includes a cold storage and controlled atmosphere storage along with the automatic packaging. Harshna Naturals is a partnership firm established of Kashmiri businessmen and a Delhi based business family namely Kohli family.
The facility according to the managing Director of the Firm Mir Khurram is aimed at making the Kashmiri fruits compatible in the international markets. “We have not been able to compete in the national and international markets because we are lacking the pre-harvesting and post harvesting technologies. This facility is aimed at providing the same services to the growers,” he said.
“We are procuring the best quality fruits, and then we do the pre sorting which is followed by cold storing them. Then we do the grading of these fruits according to their colour, weight and size. They are then washed, dried and waxed and later send for the sales. We can preserve these fruits till nine months in the cold storage,” he added.
The inauguration function among others was attended by Minister of Horticulture Sham Lal Sharma, Dr Mehboob Beigh Member Parliament, Davinder Rana, Chairman J&K Bank Haseeb Drabu, Ghulam Nabi Ratanpuri, Rakesh Bharti Mittal and others.
Sham Lal Sharma while speaking on the occasion said that the incentives that many states in India get through various schemes from the centre hardly reach to the state of the Jammu and Kashmir. “India considers Kashmir to be its crown but when it comes to the incentives through various schemes we don’t get the real benefits,” he said.
“We need to develop such unit to meet the demand and supply needs s that the growers can get the real deserving price for their produce and we will set up such infrastructure in the valley in next two years,” he said.
Speaking on the occasion Rakesh Mittal said that the setting up of the unit is a historical step and that the aim of their company is to improve the shelf life of the Kashmiri apple so as to make it competitive not only in national but in the international market as well. He asked the government to extend full support to the unit.
Lastupdate on : Thu, 15 Oct 2009 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Thu, 15 Oct 2009 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Fri, 16 Oct 2009 00:00:00 IST
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