Interview with Mr. V O PRABHAKARAN, Chairman,
Kuttiattoor Mango FPC, Kannur District (Kerala)

Q.1- Sir, could you please tell us the inspiration behind your FPC & how your FPC is contributing to the Agro-processing sector?

Around 5000 to 6000 tonnes of mangoes are being produced in Kuttiattoor, Kannur district yearly. Out of this production, only 20 % is being marketed outside and due to the poor harvesting remaining mangoes are being wasted. In order to protect the Kuttiattoor mangoes and also the mango farmers, we formed a committee including me and nine directors (N.Balakrishnan, P.V.Gangadharan, Unnikrishnan K, Prabhakaran A, Purushothaman K.K, Gopalan K.K, Chandhran K.K, Ramakrishnan RV, Mohanan. K) & Panchayat and Agricultural authorities & finally, Kuttiattoor Mango FPC got established in 2016.

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As told earlier, 6000 tonnes of mangoes are produced between 3-4 months. During the month of March and April, there will be higher production of mango and to avoid the post-harvest loss, we have established Mango Processing Centre where we are producing value-added diversified products, and also creating employment opportunities for SHGs.

Q.2 Starting as an FPC, what was the biggest hurdle you had to overcome?

The biggest hurdle was harvesting as it was the most difficult task we faced during the initial period. But through the technological interventions for harvesting, we have overcome this hurdle to a great extent.

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Q.3 What is the role of SHG in this FPC? Can you please tell us about the FPC and SHG convergence?

SHGs play a vital role in creating awareness about the Kuttiattoor mangoes. SHG members in the nearby Kuttiattoor area are trained to process value-added products and this creates major employment opportunities for them. And not only that, as they are also the shareholders of this FPC, they also avail profit for these value-added products.

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Q.4 What are the unique selling points of Kuttiattoor Mango Products in the market?

The speciality of this Kuttiattoor mango is that this mango variety comes to the market first in the month of December so people will buy this first, and due to its superior taste there is high demand for Kuttiattoor mango. Moreover, the value-added products are made only with natural ingredients and follow GMP and GHP Principles during the processing. We are also providing traditional mango products like Mango Bar with innovations in the market. We don’t compromise on the quality of the final product. We are continuously working on New Product Development with the assistance of Technical Institutions.

Q.5 What is the consumer behaviour towards Kuttiattoor Mango Products?

Consumers buy value-added products of Kuttiattoor Mango due to its superior quality in terms of taste, appearance, and overall acceptability. Therefore, we are getting a huge demand for our products.

Q.6 What is your Success Mantra?

A well-defined vision and goal are very important to be successful. Innovations and creativity are the two prominent attributes of every successful business. Networking with State Agricultural Departments, Agricultural Institutes have undeniable benefits. It’s all about utilizing each and every day in the best possible manner.

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Q.7 Sir, any concluding remarks for our readers?

I believe that FPCs/FPOs will be a great support to farmers. It is very much essential to utilize the locally available crops through the establishment of FPCs/FPOs with processing facility including preserving and storing to reduce post-harvest loss thus providing food security and safety locally. Through the initiatives of Agricultural Departments, Krishi Vigyan Kendras, NABARD, Ministry of Food Processing, and Ministry of Agriculture, farmers are overcoming all their hurdles and we look forward to the PMFME Scheme to support us further.

About the Kuttiattoor Mango Farmer Producer Company

Kuttiattoor Mango Farmer Producer Company was set up on 18th August 2016. The FPC is located in Kuttiattoor, Kannur district, Kerala and produces different types of Mango based products like Squash, Green Mango Squash, RTS, Green Mango Pickle, Mango Bar, Mango Jam. The financial turnover of the FPC was Rs. 2,10,180/-

(Content shared by Garima Kapoor, Young Professional, PMU NIFTEM & Stephy Das, Consultant - Product Development, PMU NIFTEM)