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Cooking-Oil Demand in India to Surge 44%, Boosting Imports

Cooking-oil demand in India, the world’s largest palm oil importer, is poised to jump 44 percent in the next eight years as rising incomes boost sales of noodles, cookies and fried foods, a government official said.

Consumption may surge to 23 million metric tons by 2020 from 16 million tons now, D. Bhalla, a joint secretary in the country’s food ministry, told an industry conference in Mumbai today. Imports will rise significantly in coming years to meet this demand, he said. The per capita consumption of edible oils in India is 13.5 kilograms, compared with the global average of about 26 kilograms, he said.