News Releases

News Release - Manitoba

December 10, 2007


New Delhi, India—Agriculture, Food and Rural Initiatives Minister Rosann Wowchuk today signed a letter of intent to help India develop, equip and operate a food development centre similar to Manitoba’s Food Development Centre in Portage la Prairie, to help create new markets for Manitoba’s agri-food goods and services. 
“This trade mission focuses on sharing expertise while building and strengthening relationships between entrepreneurs in the agricultural and agri-food sector of India and Manitoba,” said Wowchuk, who is in India from Dec. 7 to 14. “With the creation of a food development centre in India, new companies and products will emerge. This will help create more business opportunities for Manitoba’s own agri-food industry, as we import new products for sale here and, in return, sell raw materials, services and value-added goods to India’s entrepreneurs.”
In this joint venture, Manitoba would act as a consultant to Infrastructure Leasing and Financial Services Limited (IL&FS), one of India’s leading infrastructure development and finance companies. While the management of the centre and distribution of products developed would be co-ordinated by IL&FS, Manitoba would provide expertise in establishing the setup and design of the centre,
pre-evaluation of product needs and opportunities, equipment sourcing, development and incubation of products, training of staff and food safety.
“One of the gaps in the food-processing sector in India is lack of access to world-class technology,” said IL&FS managing director Hari Sankaran. “IL&FS has been working with Manitoba Agriculture, Food and Rural Initiatives to develop synergies that will contribute a great deal to the development of India’s food processing sector.”
“The first food development centre will be established in Bihar,” said Wowchuk.  “This centre will help identify and develop new businesses and trading opportunities for Manitoba companies, helping Manitobans reach new markets and a world of new consumers.”
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