The Indian food processing industry is among the largest in the nation in terms of growth, production, consumption and exports. The industry produces several food products such as meat, poultry, fisheries, fruits, vegetables, spices, milk and milk products, alcoholic beverages, plantations and grains. It also manufactures cocoa products and chocolates, confectionery, mineral water, soya-based items and high-protein foods. Since the liberalisation in August 1991, the government proposed and accepted multiple projects, for instance, creating foreign collaborations, joint ventures, 100% export-oriented units and industrial licenses to encourage growth and investment in the food processing industry. Foreign direct investment (FDI) in India was estimated at Rs. 2,934.1 crore (US$ 368.8 million) in FY21.
India is a major producer of food in the world, with a large and growing market. The food and grocery retail market, valued at US$ 11.3 trillion in 2021, is also among the largest in the global economy.
India's food processing sector is a sunrise sector that has gained prominence in recent years. Major processed food products exported from India include processed fruits and juices, pulses, guar gum, groundnuts, milled products, cereals preparations, oil meals and alcoholic beverages. India created history in agriculture and processed food exports by exporting products worth US$ 25.6 billion in FY22 . Export of APEDA products stood at US$ 7.4 billion as of April-June 2022, up 31% compared with US$ 5.7 billion over the same period last fiscal, according to the Directorate General of Commercial Intelligence and Statistics. Furthermore, exports of processed fruits and vegetables grew by 59.1%; cereals and miscellaneous processed items grew by 37.66%; meat, dairy and poultry products grew by 9.5%; basmati rice grew by 25.5%; non-basmati rice grew by 5%; and miscellaneous products grew by 50%.
The food sector is currently undergoing a transition in India. The Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority (APEDA) forecasts that the sector will grow at a compounded annual growth rate (CAGR) of 3% between 2022 and 2030.