Suresh Prabhakar Prabhu, Minister of Railways & Devendra Fadnavis, Chief Minister of Maharashtra laid the foundation stone for the cold storage on 30th July, 2017 at Lasalgaon near Nashik in Maharashtra. Indian Railways’ PSU CONCOR (Container Corporation of India ltd.) is developing a cold store at Lasalgaon near Nashik for storage of onions and other perishable produce. This cold storage will have a total capacity of 2500 MT out of which 1500 MT will be exclusively utilised for onion storage and remaining for other perishable commodities such as fruits & vegetables like Onion, Pomegranate, Grapes, Banana, Tomato, Citrus. Indian Railways has now steered into the areas of providing storage facility to the farmers and the cold storage at Lasalgaon will be a boon to the farmers of not only Nashik & Lasalgaon, but also of nearby areas of Jalgaon, Manmad, Dhule,etc.The cold storage is being set up on CSR model by CONCOR at a cost of Rs. 5 crores.
The cold storage will be maintained by M/s Lasalgaon Vibhag Sahakari Kharedi Vikri Sangh Ltd. Railways is a major transporter for onion and plays a key role in timely transportation of onion to various consumer market from producer states. To reduce the spoilages, Indian Railways allots the rakes/ wagons on priority basis wherever possible for carriage of onion.The climatic conditions largely affect the onion growing areas thereby leading to fluctuations in farm produce. The bumper production needs to be properly stored to stabilise supply during scarcity. The conventional methods lead to losses exceeding 35% depending on the weather conditions. The losses are thus national loss as the input cost increases. The cold storage will help in increasing the post storage life of onions & they can be even sent to remote locations. The labour cost is reduced to a great extent as there is no need for turning around the onions as required in conventional storage. There is direct saving of material cost and farming cost due to saving in weight and spoilage losses. Maharashtra being 33% contributor to the national onion production needs quality storage options.
PCCs Set-up/Being Set up by CONCOR
1. Perishable Cargo Centre (PCC) at Ghazipur, U.P.
CONCOR has set up Perishable Cargo Centre (PCC) at Ghazipur Ghat Railway station in Ghazipur, Uttar Pradesh for transportation and storage of fruits and vegetables under CONCOR CSR initiatives. The facility has been constructed on Railway land leased out to CONCOR on 2500 sqms area having facilities for ripening and storage of fruits and vegetables. The facility is catering to the Storage needs of farmers of the adjoining areas thereby saving vegetables and agriculture produce from getting perished. The facility was inaugurated by Honorable Prime Minister on 14th Nov. 2016 at Ghazipur, U.P.
2. Perishable Cargo Centre (PCC) at Rajatalab, Varanasi, U.P.:
Similar facility is also being constructed at Rajatalab Varanasi, Uttar Pradesh for storage of fruits and vegetables of local farmers of adjoining areas. Its foundation stone was laid by Honorable Prime Minister. It is likely to be commissioned by November end.
3. Centre for Perishable cargo Azadpur, Delhi:
CONCOR has set up a centre for Perishable Cargo (CPC) at Azadpur, Delhi. The facility is equipped with state-of-the-art ripening chambers for banana with auto control for temperature relative humidity and ethylene concentration. Facility is also equipped for pre-ripening processing of banana and other fruits like washing, de-sapping, sorting, grading, and packing etc. It has got cold storage facilities for storage of fruits and vegetables.
4. Perishable Cargo Centre (PCC) at Singur, Hooghly district.
CONCOR has set-up Perishable Cargo Centre (PCC) at Singur, Hooghly district, of West Bengal. Singur Perishable Cargo Centre has been built using the “state of the Art” CIPC technology to provide higher value addition to grower of potatoes. This has helped storage of potatoes at optimal temperature thereby increasing its value.
5. Up- gradation of Mango Pack House at Sindhudurg:
CONCOR has taken up the work of Up- gradation of Mango Pack House at Deogad Tehsil, Sindhudurg, Maharashtra in order to provide better facilities to Mango grower farmers exporting mangoes.