The research was based on the notion that there are many challenges facing the food industry in India. However, the food industry is a broad sector of the Indian economy and thus there was a need to narrow down the research on a specific market sector. For this reason, the export sector with focus on the exports to the European Union Market. This was after reviewing the literature and finding that the EU was a major destination of Indias food products. Therefore, the initial objective of the research was determining the challenges and problems faced by the food industry in India was eventually narrowed down to: determination of problems faced by the food industry in India during exports to the European Union countries.
To accomplish this an ideology was developed to use of resourceful secondary sources as the source of information for the study. In this case, the major sources used include
Previous research journals: which would yield any piece of necessary information for the study. Specifically, most of the journals used were those tackling food safety and food control sector in the Indian Food Industry. These journals were considered very resourceful since they were specifically containing the information needed for this particular study. Further, those that provided information on the EU regulations were considered.
Web Databases: which were considered to be major sources of the data necessary to show the trend of the food industry exports, which was to help clarify and confirm the validity of the research. They major databases used are the APEDA and the UN statistical databases reason being, the two were considered credible and recognized on a global level.
Major websites: websites such as the Food Safety Authority India, the CDC, the WHO and the India Brand Equity foundation (IBEF) websites. These websites were also considered since they belonged to renown institutions (organizations). For instance, the CDC was taken as a good source for disease information. The WHO on the other hand was considered to be a credible source of information about the toxicity of lead (to be specific).
RASFF annual reports: the reports were considered since they are under the EU Commission and contained credible and reliable information about the nature of Indian-sourced food imports.
Government publications: this were considered since they definitely contained accurate account of the considered food safety legislations and regulations and details of the case study lawsuit.
Summary of stages of the research
The research was majorly based on the literature review of many research journals and other credible sources as already outlined. A major component of the research was the case study. The Nestle Maggi Noodles controversy formed a good basis and practical view of the nature of the Indian Food Industry. This is so because, being a latest controversy, it depicts the nature of the industry currently. Therefore, it added much value to the research.
The research was structured such that it followed the following ethics associated with secondary sources:
Credibility the sources used were majorly from renown researchers and also from renown organizations and databases as outlined in the previous section. For this reason, untrusted websites such as blogs, and others, such as Wikipedia were highly disregarded. Also an array of reference materials was considered (50 sources) so that information was counterchecked and compared among the resources and taken as accurate before it was considered in the study.
Validity in the scope of time was ensured in that about 90% of the used resources were not more than 4 years old. Those beyond this age were only used if they proved to be so resourceful and to contain content that never really differed from the recent documents.
In the whole document, no piece of information was copy/cut pasted from the reference materials. In this case, the work written was plagiarism free. Only statistical data were taken as it was from these sources.
Reliability the study was ensured to be reliable since only the trusted, credible and recent materials were used. In so doing, the conclusions and recommendations drawn from the findings were purely based on the reviewed information and not to forget the major Maggi Noodles case study. The case study was aimed at adding value to the study thus making it more reliable.
Comparing this research with the previous researches, it is evident that most of the addressed issues are similar. The advantageous bit of this report being that it was linking the challenges on a more subjective (considering India exports to EU) and yet it was objective having considered the mentioned case study. This is novel since it did yield good results.
Even though the research was successful, it was accompanied by various limitations: only secondary data was used. In most cases, a mash up of both secondary and primary data is considered more effective. Statistical analysis of the major challenges was not done since there were no sources explaining the individual challenges in details and extensively along with their statistical data.
Recommendations to future researchers
Future researchers seeking to explore this topic in-depth should:
Consider the use of primary data so as to get a firsthand view of the challenges faced by the food industry in India. As is evident, only secondary sources of data of information were used in this piece of work which offers a good view insight on the challenges facing the food industry but a combination of the two would be better.
Carry the research out in a wider scope of time so that the results of different time periods can be acquired. A wider scope of data would yield more reliable and generalizable results.
Try and search for more data from various sources so as to have statistical definition and analysis of the challenges. Statistical representation of data: through graphs, tables or charts tend to yield a good visual impression which means that they are easier to generalize.
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