Helped by Horticulture deptt, women SHG sets up thriving micro food processing unit

UDHAMPUR: A five member women Self Help Group(SHG) has set up a thriving micro Food processing unit with the intervention of Horticulture Department under Mission for Integrated Development of Horticulture (MIDH), here at village Bashat (Chenani).

Named M/S green Himalaya, the project has been established with an objective to provide support to vegetable /fruit producing farmers, and enable the women members to earn livelihood by processing of surplus vegetables and fruits of surrounding areas.

Before adopting this micro food enterprise, the group of women was trained by Horticulture department for one month and later acquired micro skills at Central Institute of Post Harvest Engineering & Technology (CIPHET) Ludhiana, Punjab.

The Green Himalaya Group, which started its journey in the year 2017, has successfully grown into a self sufficient unit with a proper certification from FSSAI.

The strategic location of the unit on the Chenani- Sudhmahadev Road is helping them to earn on an average of Rs 4000-5000 per day.

The group of women is involved in preparation of good quality Jam, pickles, jellies, sauces, chutney, ketchup, besides drying of vegetables and fruits.

A training programme was conducted in the art of fruit and vegetable preservation for women group at Chenani in the year 2016-17. Over 100 women/housewives participated in the programme wherein they were trained to enhance the shelf life of locally available fruits and vegetable for better nutrition and health benefits. The training programme was a major success.

With the launch of scheme of Low cost preservation unit under MIDH, this group of five women was identified in the adjoining village of Bashat near Chenani for providing the technical and financial support to establish a Low cost preservation unit.

The unit was established under the MIDH scheme at a total cost of about Rs 3.0 lakh. A subsidy of Rs 1.0 lakh was provided to the group on Machinery and Equipment.

Various processing machinery was purchased and established by group which included Pulper, Fruit Mill, Dehydrator, Hydraulic Juice Press etc. The unit successfully started working in the year 2018-19 and is presently engaged in processing and marketing of various fruit and vegetable products like Jams, Pickles, Jellies, Sauces, Chutneys, and Ketchups.

The group also learned the art of dehydration and is presently engaged in preparation of dried fruit and vegetable products.

The group was successfully imparted an advanced training programme from CIPHET Ludhiana wherein they learned the new aspects and hands-on training skills especially in product development and packaging.

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Jammu Links News