Food Processing Minister requests states to charge power tariff on actual consumption basis for cold chains

NEW DELHI: Food processing Industries minister Harsimrat Kaur Badal has written to the chief ministers of state government requesting for charging power tariffs on actual consumption basis, instead of fixed charges for cold chains projects.

This will bring a great relief for the industry which is currently facing acute liquidity crunch, said Badal.

“One of the critical component of the food processing industry is the power consuming cold storage infrastructure. The cold stores need to run 24X7 to preserve the stored goods. The compressors cannot be shut down even when the capacity is not fully utilized. The movement of perishables to and from cold stores has considerably reduced during the lockdown period and has led to severe liquidity crunch for the promoters,” said the minister in a letter dated May 20.

The minister said that the industry representatives have requested for exemption from levy of fixed charges during the period of Covid lockdown. Further the charges for electricity may be levied on the basis of actual consumption rather than lump sum charges.

“It is requested that the issue of electricity tariffs may be analysed in view of the above facts and suitable relief may be granted to food processing industry at the earliest,” said Badal in her letter.

The food processing industry ensures a seamless supply of food to the consumers. The livelihood of lakhs of farmers is dependent on the uptake of their produce by the industries. Due to Covid related restrictions, several units had to face extended lockdowns with unsold inventories and mounting fixed cost. The industry needs to be supported by the government to tide over this unprecedented crisis, said Badal.


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