The 'World Food India 2023' event, organized by the Ministry of Food Processing Industry, concluded on 5th November at Bharat Mandapam, Pragati Maidan, New Delhi, graced by the esteemed presence of the President of India, Smt Droupadi Murmu. The valedictory session encapsulated the event's resounding success, with the President acknowledging its pivotal role in showcasing India's vibrant culinary heritage and fostering robust partnerships among various industries. She emphasized the country's potential as a global culinary hub and underscored the importance of enhancing food distribution to combat global hunger.
The event was inaugurated by the Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi on 3rd November disbursing Seed Capital Assistance for over one lakh SHG members. He emphasized the event's role in presenting India as the 'food basket of the world' and commemorating 2023 as the International Year of Millets. Applauding the technology and startup pavilion and food street, the Prime Minister emphasized their role in shaping the future economy. Recognizing the food processing sector as a 'sunrise sector,' he highlighted its attraction of over Rs 50,000 crore in foreign direct investment over nine years. He underscored the impact of the PLI scheme and ongoing projects under the Agri-Infra Fund, emphasizing investments of thousands of crores in processing infrastructure for fisheries and animal husbandry.
The Mega Food Event, held with the support of ten Ministries/Departments of the Government of India, six commodity boards, and 25 states, attracted significant attention from international and domestic stakeholders. The event featured a remarkable turnout of 1208 exhibitors, 14 country pavilions, and notable participation from 715 international buyers, 218 domestic buyers, and 97 corporate leaders. Spanning an expansive area of 50,000 square meters across seven exhibition halls, the event provided a comprehensive platform for showcasing the latest advancements in the food processing industry. 14 country delegations, including seven Ministerial delegations participated in the event. The event's global appeal was further reinforced by the distinguished participation of The Netherlands as the Partner Country and Japan as the Focus Country.
A distinguished CEO Roundtable marked the inaugural day of World Food India 2023, co-chaired by Union Minister Shri Pashupati Kumar Paras of the Ministry of Food Processing Industries and Union Minister Shri Piyush Goyal of the Ministry of Commerce and Industry, Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution, and Textiles. This significant gathering brought together CEOs representing over 70 leading companies in the food processing and allied sectors. Key deliberations during the Roundtable encompassed facilitation of business operations, investment strategies, sourcing interests, and a comprehensive examination of the existing gaps within the value chain of the Indian Food Processing Sector.
During the event, Shri Pashupati Kumar Paras participated in six G2G meetings. He held discussions with Ministers of Fiji, Mauritius, focusing on global partnerships in the food processing sector. He also engaged in talks with dignitaries from Greece and Lebanon, highlighting the event's commitment to international cooperation. Discussions with the Minister of Agro-Industry and Food Security from Mauritius and a Member of Parliament from Australia emphasized the event's emphasis on knowledge sharing and international ties.
The three-day event comprised 48 sessions, featuring Thematic, State, Allied Ministries, and Country & Organization sessions. Notably, 16 Thematic Sessions delved into crucial subjects such as Financial Empowerment, Quality Assurance, Innovations in Machinery and Technology, e-Commerce, and Logistics in the food processing sector. Moreover, 12 State-focused panel discussions and 11 specialized sessions by Allied ministries, including DPIIT and FSSAI, addressed pertinent industry challenges. The sessions were graced by Ministers from Gujarat, Kerala, and Andhra Pradesh.
The event also hosted knowledge sessions by The Netherlands and Japan, promoting knowledge exchange and best practices. Additionally, successful focused meetings with The Netherlands, the US-India Strategic Partnership Forum, Brazil, and the UAE highlighted growth opportunities in India's food processing sector.
Among the event's highlights was the Technology and Sustainability Pavilion, which spotlighted cutting-edge innovations in the food industry, signaling a shift toward more eco-friendly and resilient food production practices. The experiential Food Street, curated by Celebrity Chef Ranveer Brar, proved to be a delightful attraction, offering an immersive experience of India's rich culinary heritage and diverse regional cuisines. 200 chefs, including prominent names like Chef Sarah Todd and Chef Kunal Kapur, participated, conducting cookery demonstrations. The event also featured ICC23, an international culinary competition, celebrating excellence with categories like pre-millet dishes and live pasta cooking, along with masterclasses and an awards ceremony.
The event concluded with a substantial surge of investment interest, resulting in the signing of Memorandums of Understanding (MoUs) worth Rs 33,129 crore underscoring the event's significant impact on propelling India's food processing sector. Companies such as Amul, ITC, Mondelez, Kellogg’s, AB InBev, IB Group, Balaji Wafers, Ananda Dairy, Fertis, and Bikanerwala were among the signatories. More than 15200 B2B and B2G meetings conducted during the event fostered meaningful dialogues and partnerships, creating an environment conducive to knowledge exchange and industry growth.