Ice-cream makers seek duty-free import of SMP

R Balaji Chennai | Updated on December 02, 2019 Published on December 02, 2019

The Indian Ice-Cream Manufacturers’ Association has represented to the Centre to allow duty free import of Skimmed Milk Powder due to the steep increase in prices and shortage in the market.

The Association which represents the fragmented, small, medium and large scale manufacturers of ice-creams and frozen desserts will meet with the Union Minister for Animal Husbandry, Dairying and Fisheries, Giriraj Singh; and Minister for Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution Ramvilas Paswan, this week to urge the Centre to allow duty-free import of SMP.

Sudhir Shah, Secretary of the ice-cream manufacturers association, told BusinessLine that SMP prices have doubled to over ₹300 a kg now against an average ₹150 a kg last year. International prices are around ₹200 a kg. But imports will involve Customs Duty of 68 per cent apart from transportation costs.

As it is, small and medium players have been affected by the imposition of 18 per cent GST, he said. In addition, the situation regarding SMP has affected the viability of small and medium players. There over 20 lakh jobs involved directly and indirectly.

Unseasonal rains have hit crop and fodder output leading to a 15 per cent drop in milk procurement. If this is the situation in the flush season, the shortage could worsen in the coming summer season, he felt.

Import of SMP, butter and butter oil for captive consumption will not affect farmers but will support the industry which is now threatened, he said.

Published on December 02, 2019
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