Food processing - 'A Sunrise sector'

India's food ecosystem offers enormous investment opportunities with stimulating growth in the food retail sector encouraging economic policies, and attractive fiscal incentives. Through the Ministry of Food Processing Industries (MoFPI), Government of India is taking all necessary measures to boost investments in the food processing industry in India. Some of the initiatives include:

  • Pradhan Mantri Kisan Sampada Yojana (PMKSY) aims at developing modern food processing infrastructure. PMKSY has been envisaged as a comprehensive package which will result in creation of modern infrastructure with efficient supply chain management from farm gate to retail outlet.
  • Pradhan Mantri Formalisation of Micro Food Processing Enterprises Scheme (PMFME) aims to enhance existing individual micro-enterprises in the unorganized segment of the food processing industry.
  • Production Linked Incentive Scheme for Food Processing Industry (PLISFPI) aims to boost domestic manufacturing, increase exports, while supporting food manufacturing entities with stipulated Sales and willing to make investment for expansion of processing capacity and branding abroad to incentivize emergence of strong Indian brands. The scheme is EoI bases.

India’s agricultural and processed food products exports were up by 13% to $19.69 Bn in nine months of the current fiscal (2022-23) compared to the same period last year.

Agro Processing Cluster Projects approved by MoFPI

Mega Food Park Projects approved by MoFPI.

  • The share of processed food exports in agri-exports has increased substantially from 13.7% in 2014-15 to 25.6% in 2022-23.
  • The total FDI received in the food processing sector from Apr 2000 till Mar 2024 was $12.58 Bn which is 1.85% of the total FDI Equity inflow. 
  • By 2025 the Indian Food Processing market is estimated to reach $535 Bn and growing at a compound annual growth rate of 15.2%. Tier-II and Tier-III cities could mirror the trend visible in metropolitan areas, by consuming more processed food in the coming years. 
  • India’s consumer spending to grow to $6 Tn by 2030.
  • India's export of agricultural and processed food products rose close to $51 Bn in 2022-23. Major exporting countries include USA, Bangladesh, UAE, Vietnam, among others. 
  • India has emerged as world leader in the production of a variety of fruits like mango, banana, guava, papaya, sapota, pomegranate, Lime & aonla and is the second largest producer of fruits and vegetables.
  • In FY 2023-24, India exported 11.1 Mn Tonnes of non-basmati rice and 5.2 Mn Tonnes of basmati rice.
  • Government aims to make India the Global Hub for 'Shree Anna' (Millets)

100% FDI is permitted under the automatic route in food processing industries in India.

100% FDI is allowed through the government approval route for trading, including through e-commerce in respect of food products manufactured or produced in India.

For further details, please refer FDI Policy

  • %

    Share of GVA of Agriculture & Allied Sector in Total Economy (at current prices) (2022-23)

  • %

    Share in total employment

  • $ Bn

    Worth of agricultural and processed food products exported in 2022-23

  • %

    Cropping intensity

Explore Related Sub Sectors

World's largest producer of Spices, Milk and Pulses

World’s second largest producer of tea and sugarcane

World's second largest producer of wheat, fruits, and vegetables

Industry Scenario

India’s food processing sector is one of the largest in the world and its output is expected to reach $535 Bn by 2025-26.

The Food Processing sector in India has a quintessential role in linking Indian farmers to consumers in the domestic and international markets. The Ministry of Food Processing Industries (MoFPI) is making all efforts to encourage investments across the value chain. The food processing industry has a share of 12.22% (at 3-digit of NIC classification) in the employment generated in all Registered Factory sector engaging approximately 2.03 Mn people. Unregistered food processing sector supports employment to 5.1 Mn workers as per the NSSO 73rd Round report 2015-16 and constituted 14.18% of employment in the unregistered manufacturing sector. Major sectors constituting the food processing industry in India are processed fruits and vegetables, RTE/RTC, mozzarella cheese, processed marine products, edible oils, beverages, and dairy products.

Under PMKSY the projects sanctioned under various schemes as on date (30.09.2023) include, 41 Mega Food Parks, 371 Cold Chain projects, 68 Agro-Processing Clusters, 474 proposals under Creation/Expansion of Food Processing & Preservation Capacities (CEFPPC), 61 Creation of Backward and Forward Linkages Projects, 46 Operation Green projects, 186 Food Testing Laboratories projects have been approved across the country.

The key sub-segments of the Food Processing industry in India are Fruits & Vegetables, Poultry & Meat processing, Fisheries, Food retail, dairy industry, etc.

Key facts:

  • Total horticulture production in the year 2022-23 is estimated to be 355.48 MT, an increase of about 8.30 MT (2.39%) as compared to the year 2021-22 (final)
  • India ranks 1st in Milk production and the total milk production in the country during 2022-23 is 230.58 MT. In the year 2022-23, the milk production has registered an annual growth rate of 3.83%
  • In 2022-23, the total egg production in the country is 138.38 Bn which have increased by 6.77% as compared to the previous year
  • The fish production in 2022-23 is was recorded at 17.54 MT .
  • Production of plantation crops is estimated to increase from 15.76 MT in 2021-22 to 16.84 MT in 2022-23, which is an increase of about 6.80%
  • India achieved an all-time high exports of seafood both in terms of volume and value by shipping 1.73 Mn MT of seafood worth $8.09 Bn during FY 2022-23
  • The export of other cereals recorded a growth of 13.64% in nine months of the current fiscal
  • India export of other Cereals (Excluding Rice, Wheat Maize and Millet) to the world was worth $3.39 Mn in FY 2022-23 as per APEDA
  • The total meat production in the country is 9.77 MT for the year 2022-23 with an annual growth rate of 5.13%. The total five major meat producing States are Uttar Pradesh (12.20%), West Bengal (11.93%), Maharashtra (11.50%), Andhra Pradesh (11.20%), and Telangana (11.06%)
  • The estimated production of rice is 135.75 MT, Wheat is 110.55 MT, and Nutri/Coarse cereals is 57.31 MT for the year 2022-23
  • India’s exports of foodgrains have registered a steady growth in last few years which is reflected in the increase in India’s share in world foodgrain exports from 3.38% in 2010 to 7.79% in 2022 as per UN COMTRADE statistics. Top agricultural products exported from India include Marine products, rice, spices, amongst others.
  • Non-Basmati Rice has emerged as India’s top export item among the many agricultural and processed food product exports under APEDA basket, with the export of $4,663 Mn in nine months of 2022-23


  • Agri-commodity hub

    Largest producer of several agri-commodities

  • Huge consumer base

    1.3 Bn consumers with increasing demand for branded food

  • Strong economy

    India is the fastest growing largest economy in the world

  • Conducive policies

    Proactive government policies with attractive fiscal incentives

  • One District, One Product (ODOP)

    Under ODOP scheme, 713 districts have been identified across the country


Production Linked Incentive (PLI) Scheme

The Union Cabinet chaired by the Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi has given its approval to introduce the Production-Linked Incentive (PLI) Scheme in Food Products for Enhancing India’s Manufacturing Capabilities and Enhancing Exports – Atmanirbhar Bharat. Under the PLI Scheme for Food Processing Industry, a total of 158 applications have been approved under different categories including 22 applicants (out of 30 selected applicants) selected to participate under PLI Scheme for Millet-based products are MSMEs. The implementation of PLI scheme is likely to facilitate expansion of food processing capacity by nearly INR 30,000 crore and create additional direct and indirect employment opportunities for about 2.5 Lakh persons by the year 2026-27. As per the data being reported by the PLIS beneficiaries, investment of about INR 7,099 Cr has been made under the Scheme.

  • INR 10,900 Cr

    Scheme Outlay

Industrial Land Bank Portal

GIS - based map displaying available infrastructure for setting up business operations in the state.

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    Asked Questions

    Who can be an Applicant under PLI scheme for Food Processing Industry?

    Applicant for the purpose of the Scheme shall be

    • Proprietary Firm or Partnership Firm or Limited Liability Partnership (LLP) or a Company registered in India
    • Co-operatives
    • SME and making an Application for seeking approval for coverage under the Scheme.

    The applicant may include a company applying on its own behalf and its subsidiary(/ies) provided the Applicant company holds more than 50% of the stock of its subsidiary(/ies) and that none of such subsidiary company(/ies) is included in any other Applicant company under the Scheme.

    Marketing Federation or Apex level co-operatives can also apply on behalf of Member Unions or Member co-operatives in the case of co-operatives.

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    Whether transportation by individual farmers from their farm gate to the Mandies in the production clusters, which meets the minimum distance of 100 KM requirement, is eligible for subsidy under Operation Greens Scheme?

    Transport within the clusters is eligible subject to meeting of minimum distance criteria for all category of applicants.

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    Whether single railway receipt, which is being issued against transport of crops by few farmers together, can be accepted as supporting documents for subsidy claim under Operation Greens scheme?

    Usually entire rack consisting of 40 wagons is booked by one party, which aggregate the crops from different transporting parties. Railway allows only one name for sender and therefore, only one name for consignee appears in Railway Receipt. In such case, we can accept the claim with the following supporting documents:

    • Agreement/MoA between the applicant and the consignee as per RR showing the crops details, proportionate payment towards railway freight, including bank details;
    • Transaction voucher – Demand raised by consignee as per RR to the applicant for payment of proportionate freight amount;
    • Bank Statement showing payment to consignee as per RR;
    • Duly counter signed copy of RR (signed by Consignee & Applicant, both)

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    Whether names and Aadhar number of each and every farmer from whom crop has been procured is to be entered into the Online Application Form (under Operation Greens scheme)?

    Applicant can enter the details of major 10 farmers and upload the list of farmer’s detail on the Online Application Form as pdf file

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    What activities can be supported related to animal feed?

    Establishment of Animal Feed manufacturing and strengthening of existing units/ plant of the following categories:

    • Establishment of Mini, Medium and Large Animal Feed Plant
    • Total Mixed Ration Block Making Unit
    • By pass protein unit, Mineral Mixture Plant
    • Enrich Silage making unit, Animal Feed Testing Laboratory
    • Any other activities related to animal feed manufacturing.



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