Bilikere women’s collective adopts CFTRI technologies

GRAAM plans to brand products, help in setting up a unit for value-addition of millet-based products

• Ragi Mudde mix and Ragi Shishuposhan developed by the CSIR’s premier food lab were transferred to the women entrepreneurs’ initiative as a part of rural livelihood improvement initiatives

Shankar Bennur


The CSIR-Central Food Technological Research Institute (CFTRI), Mysuru, has transferred two of its technologies to a village women’s collective as a part of an endeavour to improve livelihood initiatives in rural areas.

The transfercould become possible following its MoU with Grassroots Research and Advocacy Movement (GRAAM), Mysuru. The MoU was signed last year for providing a mutual technical-social collaboration for establishing rural livelihood initiatives in the country.

The CFTRI extended technology transfer of two products – convenience flour suitable for stiff porridge (Ragi Mudde mix) and malted weaning food (Ragi Shishuposhan) through technical training to the women entrepreneurs of Bilikere women’s collective – Asare Sanjeevini Food Products.

A week-long training programme was conducted this month by Usha Dharmaraj and the team from CFTRI, which has expertise in the processing of millets and pseudo cereals, among others. Around 15 women from the collective participated in the training and learnt the process involved in preparing the above two products for their social business initiative. The training programme was held at CFTRI.

Upon successful completion of the training, they received certificates at a programme held at CFTRI recently. Executive Director of GRAAM, Basavaraju R. Shreshta; Director of CFTRI, Sridevi Annapurna Singh; Head of TTBD at CFTRI, Rajeshwar Matche; and the staff of CFTRI and GRAAM were present.

Susheela, Project Director, ZP, Mysuru, and Girish, EO, Taluk Panchayat, Hunsur, and NRLM field staff were also present.

The CFTRI director said empowering women will empower their families, thereby empowering the nation. Appreciating the efforts, she said the CFTRI will always be open to extending any technical support in making the initiative a successful one. She congratulated all the women and wished all success to the aspiring women entrepreneurs of Bilikere.

Dr. Basavaraju thanked CFTRI for joining hands with GRAAM in its social initiative and agreeing to extend its support in future initiatives. He explained about the uniqueness of the initiative and its convergence with the national interest including “Atmanirbhaar Bharat” and women empowerment.

GRAAM, in a release here, said it intends to develop a brand for products produced by the women entrepreneurs. The project aims at developing a resurgent economy in rural India by adding value to the local agricultural products. The programme is expected to benefit the entrepreneurs as well as farmers in the rural areas. “A millet-based value-added product manufacturing unit will be set up and will handhold the women entrepreneurs to streamline the business functions in a sustainable manner,” it said.

The project is being supported by Wuerth Elektroniks, a 75-year-old multinational company under its Corporate Social Responsibility initiative.

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