homemade ironing board pad fortified rice making machine:FCI changes policy, 4,500 state mills halt rice shelling

2022-04-15

homemade ironing board pad fortified rice making machine:FCI changes policy, 4,500 state mills halt rice shelling

  Tribune News Service

  Chandigarh, March 3

  Around 4,500 mills in Punjab have stopped shelling rice for three days now following a Government of India order that it will procure only fortified rice from March 1.

  The mills, located across the state, have been forced to abruptly halt the milling of custom milled rice (CMR) after the Food Corporation of India (FCI) issued a letter saying it will not accept the CMR after February 28, and take only fortified rice from the state.

  The FCI wants to take 62 lakh tonnes of fortified rice from the state, to be distributed under the integrated child development services and mid-day meal schemes.

  The milling units in the state do not have mechanised blending machines to prepare the fortified rice. Even if they were to order these blending machines now, it would take several weeks before the machines can be procured and used by the units. “Across the country, there are just 14 units that can make fortified rice, and their combined daily production capacity is around 50 tonnes. These units already have pre-orders from other states and won’t be able to take fresh orders from Punjab. Even if we were to hire their services, we won’t be able to deliver the quantity demanded by the FCI immediately,” said a miller from Muktsar, requesting anonymity.

  The order by the FCI to the Food and Civil Supplies Department came in January-end. It may be mentioned that fortified rice is prepared by blending one per cent crushed rice with vitamins and minerals in the CMR. The cost of installing the blenders is between Rs 50 lakh and Rs 1 crore.

  A letter demanding more time (15 days) for making arrangements to make fortified rice was sent by KAP Sinha, Principal Secretary, Food and Supplies Department, to the Chairman of the FCI, wherein he has said that millers in Punjab be allowed to blend the vitamins and minerals manually in the CMR till the mechanised blenders were installed in the mills.

  State seeks time

  A letter demanding more time (15 days) for making arrangements to make fortified rice was sent by KAP Sinha, Principal Secretary, Food and Supplies Department, to the Chairman of the FCI, wherein he has said that millers in Punjab be allowed to blend the vitamins and minerals manually in the CMR till the mechanised blenders were installed in the mills.”

homemade ironing board pad fortified rice making machine:FCI changes policy, 4,500 state mills halt rice shelling