Agriculture and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority (APEDA) (http://apeda.gov.in ) operates financial assistance scheme which has four segments as follows:
- Infrastructure development
- Quality Development
- Market Development
- Transport Assistance
Although Kosher Certification and Halal certification in principle should be covered in Quality development or Market development but on contacting APEDA they decline the claim saying “Being Kosher and Halal certification are religious one we don’t consider this for financial assistance”.
There are guidelines for scheme where nothing available on record which suggest that financial assistance can’t be granted for certification process undertaken for Kosher or Halal. Ultimately these certifications are going to support export from India. Exporter feels initial difficulty as there is always first small order, of course this will be proceeded by big one. But initial kosher certification cost many times make it non-viable and exporter feel themselves helpless.
APEDA member need to take strongly this with concern authority. Take example today India is largest producer of milk and can export milk powder and related products to USA but surprisingly Kosher milk is not available in India. Resulting by products of milk like cream, cheese or paneer also can’t be certified kosher. Amul, India’s largest producer of milk could not proceeding to avail certificate due cost factor as certifying milk will require supervision also which makes it costly affair.