New Delhi: Government of India has approved an action plan for construction of steel silos in the country for a capacity of 100 LMT in Public-Private Partnership (PPP) model for modernizing storage infrastructure and improving the shelf life of stored foodgrains for Public Distribution System. Against this, as on September 30, 2019 steel silos of 7.25 LMT capacity have been created. Construction of steel silos which are state-of-the-art storage will improve India’s foodgrain storage infrastructure.
The silo developers for construction are selected through the tender process. Subsequently, in the concession agreement signed between the authority (which is Food Corporation of India/State Government Agencies) and the concessionaire (developer), timelines are specified for completion of construction of steel silos and non-adherence to these timelines leads to the imposition of penalty on the concessionaire. Therefore, this process of construction of steel silos has an in-built feature of specified timelines to complete the construction of steel silos.
What are Steel silos?
Silos are a structure for storing bulk materials. The steel silo is made of a galvanised metal sheet. Silos are used in agriculture to store grain (see grain elevators) or fermented feed known as silage. Silos are more commonly used for bulk storage of grain, coal, cement, carbon black, woodchips, food products and sawdust. Three types of silos are in widespread use these days that are: tower silos, bunker silos, and bag silos.
This information was given in a written reply by the Minister of State Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution Danve Raosaheb Dadarao in Lok Sabha on Tuesday.
Shortage of food storage behind wastage of grains
Shortage of food storage has been one of the biggest reasons behind the wastage of food grains in India. The country grows enough food grains to meet the needs of its entire population, yet is unable to feed millions of them. According to an estimate by Associated Chambers of Commerce, almost twenty-one MMT (million metric tonnes) of wheat which is almost equal to Australia’s total wheat production rots each year due to improper storage. As a result, the country experiences a post-harvest loss of Rs 2 lakh crores annually due to lack of food processing units and storage facilities. Policy approval on construction of steel silos which are state-of-the-art storage will improve India’s foodgrain storage infrastructure.