UP clears decks for PepsiCo's Rs 500 crore potato chips plant

Topics PepsiCo

The Uttar Pradesh government has cleared the decks for the proposed Rs 500 crore potato chips plant of global food and beverage major PepsiCo’s in Mathura district.

The state cabinet meeting chaired by chief minister Yogi Adityanath here on Tuesday night gave its nod to issue a ‘letter of comfort’ (LoC) to PepsiCo India Holdings Private Limited for the proposed greenfield project under the UP Industrial Investment and Employment Promotion Policy 2017. A LoC is a formal letter acknowledging support to an industrial project.

PepsiCo plans to procure 60,000 tonnes of potato annually from the local farmers for the plant, which is expected to be operational before mid 2021.

Meanwhile, the UP cabinet also decided to issue another LoC to Triveni Engineering and Industries for its proposed molasses and grain based distillery-cum-cogeneration power unit in Bulandshahr district.

These two projects are expected to involve total investment of Rs 689 crore and create about 1,300 new job opportunities in the state.

A state government spokesperson observed that the development would spur business activities in UP and promote the farm and food processing sector, thus benefiting the farmers.

Earlier, PepsiCo had announced to invest more than Rs 500 crore in its Mathura facility through the foreign direct investment (FDI) route.

The UP State Industrial Development Corporation (UPSIDC) had already allotted 36 acres of land to the company. However, some farmers had been agitating for their demands and resisting the physical handover of about 27 acres.

In a meeting to review projects for which the Adityanath government had signed memorandum of understanding (MoU) with private companies, UP infrastructure and industrial development commissioner (IIDC) Alok Tandon had directed the Mathura administration and UPSIDC to resolve the land acquisition issue pertaining to PepsiCo.

“The issue has been resolved and the company has now started the civil work,” Tandon had told Business Standard last month and added it was after a gap of nearly 13 years that PepsiCo was setting up a food processing plant in India after its Punjab unit, which was commissioned in 2006.

While PepsiCo plans to invest Rs 500 crore, independent ancillary units are estimated to bring additional investment of Rs 500 crore, thus totalling Rs 1,000 crore in investment related to the potato chips project.

On July 28, 2019, PepsiCo plant was among the 292 industrial projects totalling more than Rs 65,000 crore, which witnessed their foundation laying in Lucknow at the hands of union home minister Amit Shah.

These projects were part of the Rs 4.68 trillion worth of 1,047 MoU signed by the Adityanath government with companies at the ‘UP Investors Summit’ in Lucknow on 21-22 February, 2018. The Summit was inaugurated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi amid presence of top industrialists viz. Mukesh Ambani, Kumar Mangalam Birla, Adani etc.

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