Bhubaneswar: Rice bran, once considered not of much use beyond cattle feed and fuel in Odisha, has come as a boon for farmers because of agri-technology popularization initiatives taken up by the state government.
Considering the potential for production of rice bran oil in Odisha, Chief Secretary A K Tripathy at a high level meeting directed the department of MSME to make demand assessment of the rice bran oil and present availability of the raw material for promotion of small and medium enterprises in this sector.
"Since rice bran oil contains immune supporting nutrients and unsaturated fat, it can be developed to an attractive enterprise for young entrepreneurs", Tripathy said, adding that proper assessment of the market demand and economy involved in the trade will be a reliable guide for the young entrepreneurs.
Outlining the revised policies framed in wake of the COVID-19 pandemic MSME secretary Satyabrata Sahu said: "Incentives like interest subsidy @ 5 per cent per annum for 5 years on term loan from the date of commercial production, 75 per cent net SGST reimbursement for 5 years up to the limit of 100 per cent investment on plant and machinery.
"Exemption of electricity duty up to contract demand of 500 KVA for 5 years, assistance for quality certification, employment cost subsidy and technical knowhow now available for the sector".
Director Industries Reghu G said as of now 12 rice bran units are operating in the state. Of them seven are in Bargarh district, one is in Jajpur district, one is in Khordha district, two are in Koraput district and one is in Balasore district. A total amount of Rs 1115.34 lakh incentive/subsidy has been provided to the eligible units, he said.
"This type of enterprise is quite rewarding. Around 800 milligram of healthy edible oil can be extracted from the bran generated from one quintal of paddy," said assistant director of industries M M Patra.
He said this oil is sold at a higher price in the market than that of the normal refined oil. There is potential for more such units through local entrepreneurs in paddy rich districts, Patra said.
(With PTI Inputs)