Kerala has always been a 'Leading State' in food processing, a State with its food processing industry acting as the launchpad towards making major contributions to food exports from the country ever since time of independence.
‘Food Processing’ is a sunrise sector, which besides having huge market prospects, also has tremendous potential for contributing to the growth of the agriculture and allied sectors like horticulture, animal husbandry, fisheries etc. Therefore, 'Food Processing' has been accorded the status of a Priority Sector by the State Government in Kerala.
The State Govt. has vigorously promoted the concept of specialized infrastructure for food processing in the form of "Food Parks" and thereby earned the reputation of being among the first States to set up a chain of Food Parks. Kerala is the first to set up a Food Park in the country (KINFRA Food Processing Park at Kakkancherry in Malappuram District has distinction of being first Food Park of the country). Kerala also has set up the first exclusive Special Economic Zone (SEZ) for agro-food processing at Kakkancherry. The State has a robust industrial infrastructure consisting of 5 functional Food Parks and 3 upcoming Parks dedicated exclusively for the food processing sector.
Kerala has been successful in developing its ethnic food preparations for tapping the export markets around the world, mainly to cater to the vast Malayali diaspora across the world. These products have evolved into an important export sector. Besides, lot of non-residents have also made investments in food processing sector of the State.
The State Govt. offers incentive for setting up industry through its scheme 'Entrepreneur Support Scheme. Special incentive is offered for food processing, it being a priority sector.