Railways Minister Suresh Prabhakar Prabhu on 27 February 2017 launched New Catering Policy 2017 of the Indian Railways.
This new Catering Policy will delink food production and food distribution. Food will be cooked anywhere in the kitchens of IRCTC in a hygienic manner using mechanized system. While, food will be distributed using professionals from the hospitality industry.
Highlights of the New Catering Policy 2017 in Mobile Units and Base Kitchens
• IRCTC will manage catering service on all mobile units including catering services on all the trains started on short notice.
• Pantry car contracts awarded by zonal railways will also be reassigned to IRCTC.
• Meals for all mobile units will be picked up from the nominated kitchens that are owned operated and managed by IRCTC.
• All four Base Kitchens under departmental operation of Zonal Railways and all kitchen units will be handed over to IRCTC on ‘as is where is basis’.
• Kitchen structures/ land/space will be handed over by Zonal Railways to IRCTC for a period of 10 years which can be extendable for another period of 5 years.
• IRCTC will develop the Business model for the kitchens so that they can expand and enhance the service.
• IRCTC will determine the menu of standard meals and A-la-carte items.
• IRCTC may also involve Self Help groups for providing catering related services.
Highlights of the New Catering Policy 2017 in Static Units
• Zonal Railways will manage the static units except base kitchens and kitchen units to be handed over to IRCTC.
• IRCTC will be responsible for catering services in static units like food plazas, food courts and fast food units.
• Allotment of all minor catering units at all category of stations will be done through open tender.
• Allotment of Milk Stalls at all stations will be done through open tender system as against calling application.
• Tenure of all static units (except kitchen units and food plaza) will be 5 years only.
• 33 per cent sub quota for women in allotment of each category of minor catering units at all category of stations has also been provided.