Undertaken By: Multiple, Recent Publication: 2019
Around Rs. 92,000 crores worth of major agricultural produce (at 2014 wholesale prices) is lost in India every year (Central Institute of Post-Harvest Engineering and Technology, 2016). The actual economic loss would be compounded if we consider retail price, hunger, farmer distress and farm loan wavers. While many factors contribute to post-harvest losses in India, one of the major causes is the lack of effective cold chains. Cleaner and more efficient cold chains can help address our Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) such as ending poverty and hunger. They are also important in light of India’s climate commitments. But the lack of access to un-interrupted power and the low adoption of energy efficient and climate friendly technologies hinders the development of clean and efficient cold chains in India. Until now, the concept of clean cold-chains has largely been an alien one , and cold storage considered as a stand-alone infrastructure rather than a key component of agri-supply chain. Now, a disruptive paradigm shift is required to arrest post-harvest food loss in India through the effective network of cleaner and more energy efficient cold-chains.