Bhubaneswar: In order to tap the potential of women entrepreneurship through Mission Shakti, the state government has decided to allow its members to make foray into the urban food security programme ‘Aahaar’.
As per the decision, Mission Shakti in convergence with the State Urban Development Authority (SUDA) under Housing and Urban Development department is setting up three state-of-the-art pickle manufacturing units at Baripada, Berhampur and Dhenkanal to cater to the needs of the Aahaar centers across the state.
Under the Aahaar programme, standardised cooked meals (rice and Dalma) are provided at a cost of Rs 5 to the urban needy population. All the 166 Aahaar centres are managed by SHGs. Each meal includes 10 gm pickle which translates into 1 ton per day or 300 ton per year. Till now, the SHGs have been purchasing the pickle from the open market.
The government has selected Maa Durga SHG, Baripada; Bighneswar II SHG, Berhampur and Mahasangam Mission Shakti ALF, Dhenkanal to run fully mechanised pickle centers to meet the required demand of Aahaar centres. Each unit will supply pickle to the Aahaar centers of 10 districts.
All the three Mission Shakti SHGs have signed an MoU with Central Food Technological Research Institute (CFTRI-CSIR), Mysuru on technology transfer of pickle making process. The president and secretary from the groups had gone for an exposure visit to CFTRI in March to have first-hand experience on pickle making.
CFTRI and the Horticulture officials are providing necessary training to these SHGs. As per the norms of Food Safety Standard Authority of India (FSSAI), Food Safety Supervisors (FSS) have been engaged at the pickle making units to ensure quality.
The groups have already procured requisite raw materials such as mango, lemon, carrot, ginger, green chilli and spices Procurement of machinery and other equipment from CFTRI has been completed.
The business model estimate of the project is Rs 80 lakh out of which Rs 47 lakh each incurred towards civil construction has been borne by Mission Shakti Department. The three groups have provided with a loan of Rs 30 lakh each from HDFC Bank as working capital and cost of equipment for operationalisation of the pickle units. The units will start production from August.
The cost of production of pickles has been estimated to be Rs 45 per kg and selling price proposed to be Rs 51. With each unit supplying 100 tonne of pickles, the estimated profit is around Rs 6,00,000 per annum.
It may be noted that Mission Shakti has provided business worth Rs 2800 crore in two years against the government target of Rs 5000 crore in five years.