Bhubaneswar: Science & Technology Minister Ashok Chandra Panda today launched products of three startups-RNA Biotech, Thinkgenix and Odisha Beverages during an outreach event organised by Institute of Life Sciences (ILS), Bhubaneswar today as part of “Azadi ka Amrit Mahotsav” celebration.
Addressing the inaugural session of the outreach event focusing on “Secondary Agriculture and Product Development”, the Minister said, “Secondary agriculture has enormous potential in contributing towards enhanced farm income and effective utilization of farm produces and can contribute to income generation and self-employment”.
Panda stated that Secondary Agriculture is gaining importance in view of the realization of enhancing the farmers’ income that has been affected due to several factors including declining farm
productivity, availability of assured marketing avenues of farm products and challenges faced by increasing climate change vulnerability.
In this context, several initiatives have been undertaken to focus on value addition to primary agriculture and building agricultural enterprises in both rural and urban sectors, Panda added.
He appreciated the enthusiasm and commitment of these start-ups and wished these start-ups will encourage others to initiate activities for achieving greater success in the coming days.
Minister also informed that ILS-Bioincubator which has been established with the support of the Department of Science and Technology of the state government currently hosts 23 start-ups, a significant achievement brought in a short time period.
Manoj Kumar Mishra, Secretary, Department of Science and Technology said that ILS Bioincubator through a competitive process has been awarded a start-up fund of Rs 5.00 crore from the Union Ministry of Industry & Commerce for providing support to a number of start-ups and hoped the provision will allow ILS incubator to attract a large number of start-ups and enable the development of a number of diversified products.
He also highlighted the activities of his department to encourage and support the Startup ecosystem in the State.
In his welcome address Director, ILS Dr Ajay Parida informed that the programme includes panel discussions and exhibitions to showcase the products, the Startups have developed.
He said that the thematic sessions which have been identified are Science and Technology Innovation and Incubation ecosystem, Agri-Nutri- Biotech, Health Care, Electronics and Instrumentation, Civil Infrastructure and Engineering, Climate Change, Ecology and Environment and Energy and Devices.
Later on Dr Padmini Swain, Director, NRRI, Dr Kamalesh Mishra, President, Seafood Exporters Association of India, Odisha Region, Dr Sanat Mishra, Senior Scientist and Director, Agro Consultancy Support Services, Ashit Mohapatra, MD and CEO, Agri-link Food Processing Pvt Ltd Sriram Panda, MD, MITS Mega Food Park spoke in the plenary session on subjects such as Value addition and product development by agri- entrepreneurs, Export potential of Fisheries products, Market-Led Initiatives (MLIs) by Farmer Producer Organization, Products from Horticulture Sector and Entrepreneurship in Food technologies.