Salt Farming Industry in India: Revival Plans (Download PDF)

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India is the third largest salt producer after China and USA with global annual production about 230 million tones. In 1947, salt was imported from the United Kingdom & Adens but today India is in a position of exporting surplus salt. Production of salt during 1947 was 1.9 million tones which increased tenfold to 22.18 million tons during 2011 - 12.

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Created with Highcharts 5.0. 14Top 5 Salt Producing CountriesUnited States (34.2%) United States (34.2%) China (28%) China (28%) Germany (15%) Germany (15%) India (12.3%) India (12.3%) Canada (10.5%) Canada (10.5%) India (12.3%) Top 5 Salt Producing Countries: 12.3

Sources of Salt

  • The main sources of salt in India are
  • Sea brine
  • Lake brine
  • Sub-soil brine and
  • Rock salt deposits

Major Salt Producing Centers

  • Sea water is an inexhaustible source of salt. Salt production along the coast is limited by weather and soil conditions. The major salt producing centres are
  • Marine Salt works along the coast of Gujarat (Jamnagar, Mithapur, Jhakhar, Chira, Bhavnagar, Rajula, Dahej, Gandhidham, Kandla, Maliya, Lavanpur), Tamil Nadu (Tuticorin, Vedaranyam, Covelong), Andhra Pradesh (Chinnaganjam, Iskapalli, Krishnapatnam, Kakinada & Naupada), Maharashtra (Bhandup, Bhayandar, Palghar), Orissa (Ganjam, Sumadi) and West Bengal (Contai)
  • Inland Salt Works in Rajasthan using lake brine and sub-soil brine viz. Sambhar Lake, Nawa, Rajas, Kuchhaman, Sujangarh and Phalodi
  • Salt works in Rann of Kutch using sub-soil brine viz: Kharaghoda, Dhrangadhra; Santalpur
  • Rock Salt Deposits at Mandi in the State of Himachal Pradesh

Status of Salt Industry

  • 11799 salt manufacturers engaged in production of common salt in 6.09 lakh acres
  • 87.6 % small salt producers with individual extent less than 10 acres
  • 5.8 % large scale producers with individual extent more than 100 acres
  • 6.6 % medium scale producers with individual extent between 10 and 100 acres
  • Average annual production of salt is 215.80 lakh tones.
  • Gujarat, Tamil Nadu and Rajasthan surplus salt producing states accounting for 96 % of the production- Gujarat contributes 76.7%, followed by Tamil Nadu (11.16%) and Rajasthan (9.86%).
  • 62 % of production from large salt producers followed by small scale producers and rest by medium scale producers
  • Average salt for human consumption about 59 lakh tons and for industrial consumption is about 107 lakh tones

Salt Export

  • India exports surplus production of about 35 lakh tones on an average
  • In addition to China, other countries like Japan, Bangladesh, Indonesia, South Korea, North Korea, Malaysia, U. A. E. , Vietnam, and Qatar also import salt from India.

Government Schemes for Salt Industry Promotion

Strategy of Universal Salt Iodization and Consumption for elimination of Iodine Deficiency Disorders (IDD) under the National Iodine Deficiency Disorders Control Program (NIDDCP).

Program started in 1962 initially for Goiter endemic areas but after 1984, it was implemented throughout the country.

Country produces about 62 lakh tones of iodized salt and about 59.7akh tones of iodized salt supplied for human consumption against the requirement of about 60.5 lakh tones for entire population.

Model Salt Farms at Nawa in Rajasthan, Ganjam in Odisha and Markanam in Tamil Nadu set up to educate salt manufacturers, to improve quality of salt and meet global standards.

Model Salt Farm at Markanam established in collaboration with Central Salt & Marine Chemicals Research Institute (CSMCRI), Bhavnagar.

Image of Salt's role in Indian Independence

Image of Salt’s Role in Indian Independence

Image of Salt’s role in Indian Independence

Governance of Salt Industries

Salt is a central subject and appears as item No. 58 of the Union List of the 7th Schedule, which reads:

  • Manufacture, Supply and Distribution of Salt by Union Agencies
  • Regulation and control of manufacture, supply and distribution of salt by other agencies.

Central Government responsible for controlling all aspects of the Salt Industry. Salt Commissioner’s Organization, an attached Office under the Ministry of Commerce & Industry (Department of Industrial Policy & Promotion), Government of India entrusted with the above task.

Government delicensed salt Industry by deleting provisions relating to salt in the Central Excise & Salt Act, 1944. Salt Commissioner’s Organization promotes growth and development of salt industry:

  • Technological development and quality improvement
  • Salt iodization program for combating iodine deficiency disorders
  • Infrastructure development promoting salt industry
  • Export of salt

Government Schemes for Salt Laborers

  • Salt Industry is labor intensive with 1.11 lakh laborers employed daily on an average. Salt Commissioner’s Organization put in place a number of Labor Welfare Schemes for ameliorating the working and living conditions of salt laborers.
  • Labor Welfare Schemes for Salt Workers particularly housing under NAMAK MAZDOOR AWAS YOJNA
  • Government providing financial assistance for welfare and development works- an expenditure of Rs. 98.89 lakhs incurred through Salt Commissioner’s Organization (SCO) on Labor Welfare and Development Works during the last 3 years.

- Published/Last Modified on: August 29, 2017

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