New Delhi , Sep 19 :Union Consumer Affairs Minister Ram Vilas Paswan in presence of Meghalaya CM Conrad Sangma today inaugurated the Meghalaya Pavilion at the ongoing three-day SIAL India 2019 programme here .
SIAL India is an offshoot of SIAL Paris, the world’s biggest food innovation and exhibition show. Meghalaya being the partnered State in the second edition of SIAL India has actively engaged to showcase the best of agriculture and horticulture products the State has to offer.
Honey branded as “Bee Natural” from the COLKS Pvt Ltd, Shillong owned by Vijay Byrsat won the ‘Golden SIAL India Food Innovation Award’, putting Meghalaya on the centre stage during the event in Delhi and has generated the much-needed attention the State deserves in terms of the unique identity of its food products.
CM Conrad K. Sangma spent the entire day at the Pavilion in Delhi and interacted with different stakeholders, entrepreneurs, buyers and media professionals to enlighten the visitors about the rich potential of Meghalaya and North East as a unique ‘food destination’.
He informed that the North East Food Show, which will be held in Shillong in December was conceptualized after a delegation led by him visited SIAL Paris last year.
“We have lot of potential in terms of our food products and value chain. We are leveraging the rich resources and opening our market for the rest of the world,” the Chief Minister said.
Talking on the potential of the resources in Northeast, the Chief Minister said, “A business ecosystem is being developed in the State with a positive mind to promote entrepreneurship and link them through different programmes of the government to the market.”
During his engagement with different stakeholders, the Chief Minister opined that Northeast can become the hub of investment in the background that the region has a demographic advantage.
He enlightened that Northeast occupies 7.8 per cent of the country’s total land space but has a population of 3.8 cr, which makes it approximately 3.73 per cent of the country’s population, where lies an emerging market that would prove to be of interest to domestic and international investors.
A 30 member strong team of producers, entrepreneurs and officials from Meghalaya are taking part in the SIAL India exhibition. The participants from the state on being asked about the response they are getting said that many buyers have shown keen interest in their products especially coffee, turmeric, tea, honey and jackfruit products.
Internationally, SIAL, headquartered in Paris, is regarded as one of the biggest food innovation networks and the most important platform in the world for international food business and as the country is poised to become the world’s number one market ahead of China, SIAL India is expected to welcome more than 8000 B2B visitors and 200 top buyers from all over the globe.
To tap into this emerging market Meghalaya has identified Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) as crucial growth drivers of the economy, especially in the services, tourism and food processing sectors, and in this context SIAL India 2019 is a golden opportunity for the State’s SMEs to become part of the larger global economy by being exposed to, experiencing and accessing not only the latest in Food Tech, but also to meet new business partners, attract investments into the state and unlock the doors of overseas markets for Meghalaya’s farmers and entrepreneurs who will be able to sell their fruits, vegetables and other agriculture and processed food products globally.
The presence of Meghalaya in SIAL India 2019 is going to be marked by exclusive branding, signages and a 200 square meter custom designed State Pavilion titled ““Meghalaya On the Move” which will be showcasing the processed food products of 21 of the top food processing entrepreneurs of Meghalaya. Of these, two of the State’s products, BEE NATURAL HONEY and COSIA Lime & Honey drink, have been shortlisted for the prestigious SIAL FOOD INNOVATION AWARDS 2019 to be announced on Sep 19th.
As Meghalaya stands on the brink of ‘Transformational Food Processing’, SIAL INDIA 2019 will also be the curtain raiser for Meghalaya as the next food innovation destination of the country as it prepares to host the state’s first and biggest Food Exhibition and Show to be called the “North East Food Show by Meghalaya & SIAL” in December this year.