Submitted by alvin on Thu, 2016-06-30 13:09 Mysuru: To provide hygiene and tasty food to train commuters, Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation (IRCTC) signed an agreement with Defence Food Research Laboratory (DFRL) recently, to transfer technology in the field of food and beverage processing and packaging. DFRL will transfer the technical know-how and testing methods for quality assurance to IRCTC’s ready-to-eat packaged food category. The agreement was initiated by IRCTC Chairman and Managing Director (CMD) Dr A K Manocha and DFRL Director Dr Rakesh Kumar Sharma. “IRCTC has been taking several new initiatives to upgrade, professionalise and standardize its catering services on Indian Railways. The MoU will go a long way in providing quality and hygienic ready-to-eat packaged food to train travellers,” Dr Manocha said. DRDO are the pioneers in India of the unique technology of food processing in ‘Retort” amenable special kind of flexible polymeric films to achieve commercial sterility. These products can be eaten straight out of the packs or can be warmed up by dipping the pack in hot water or keeping in hot air oven before being consumed. Such foods have better acceptability as compared to their canned counterparts. “The launch of ready-to-eat items will offer variety and hygienic food which will eventually reduce complaints from the travelling passengers,” he added. DFRL has a proven track record in developing shelf-stable technologies under varying climatic conditions for India’s armed forces and also for the country’s varied palate tastes. Also, these are fully indigenously-developed technologies. Besides the launch of RTE food, IRCTC is in talks with Mysuru-based Central Food Technological Research Institute (CFTRI) for its assistance in food processing, packaging technology, training, menu planning and quality control.