Food processing centre set up to develop value-added products

The Horticulture Department has started production of squash, jams and jellies from its produce at Karumandurai farm here. The department has set up a food processing centre to develop value-added products from organic produce it cultivated at the farm spread over 1,000 acre.

According to the authorities, the department cultivates guava, mangoes, papaya, amla and tomato, brinjal, chillies and a few other varieties using organic methods. No chemical fertilizers are used. As part of imparting training to farmers and to develop value-added products, the department has set up the processing centre on the premises at ₹15 lakh.

The officials said the products did not contain any preservatives and they would be marketed through Tamil Nadu Horticulture Development Agency outlets. At present, they were manufacturing pickles from lemon, amla and garlic. Jams, jellies and squashes were being produced from guava, papaya, apple, grapes and mango.

V. Sathya, Deputy Director, Horticulture, said, “at present, we are producing 500 kg of various products and we are planning to increase it to one tonne gradually.”

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