Bhubaneswar, Feb. 12: Udyan Fresh, a retail chain vending vegetables and fruits, will soon start outlets in Cuttack with the first kiosk planned at Police Lines.
The outlet measuring about 1,200 square feet will have adequate provision for parking. Udyan Fresh, an initiative of the state horticulture directorate, began operations in Bhubaneswar last year.
Sources in the directorate said they had approached the Cuttack Municipal Corporation (CMC) to set up the outlets in five locations of the city. However, the CMC is yet to allocate land for this purpose.
The prices of the vegetables at these outlets will be low compared to those people buy at local vegetable markets because middlemen in the supply chain will be eliminated.
“The response to these kiosks in Bhubaneswar has been encouraging. So, we decided to extend the service to Cuttack for the benefit of the consumers as well as farmers,” said a senior officer in the directorate.
Apart from helping consumers pay less, the kiosks were set up in Bhubaneswar to ensure that farmers on the outskirts of the city got a fair price for the vegetables they grew.
Bhubaneswar will have 19 more outlets, which will be set up in public-private partnership mode with Surendra Agritech Pvt Ltd. While Bhubaneswar already has four such kiosks at Unit-II, Unit-IX, CRPF Square and Chandrasekharpur, construction of two other kiosks have been completed in Patia and Jayadev Vihar Square.
“Initially, we just used to have a handful of consumers. But now over 100 consumers visit the outlets everyday,” said an official of Surendra Agritech.
Senior officers in the directorate said they also had plans of giving franchise of the kiosks to private individuals in Bhubaneswar.
“We are planning to give franchise of the kiosks to people who have their own structure to run the shops. It will also create employment opportunities,” said a officer.
The directorate is also planning to set up such kiosks in Berhampur, Sambalpur and Rourkela.