AMUL EXTENDS FROZEN AND READY-TO-EAT RANGES, WHICH COULD ACCOUNT FOR 30% OF TURNOVER
Amul, the Indian food retailer, is expanding its frozen and ready-to-eat food offerings, Indian media reports have said.
The increased availability of frozen foods comes off the back of a spike in interest from consumers sparked by the Covid-19 pandemic.
Amul already has a cold-chain supply infrastructure in place for key products such as ice cream, making it easier for the firm to increase its range of frozen foods.
Food industry analysts in India say that consumers are increasingly keen to buy branded packaged frozen foods at modest prices, whether they are ready-to-eat meals or single foods such as frozen potatoes.
CNBC’s India television channel has reported that the frozen and ready-to-eat meals arm of Amul’s business currently accounts for about 10% of turnover, and this is expected to triple.
The company is now forging stronger links with farmers so it can increase its supplies of ingredients for its frozen and ready-to-eat meals.
However, Amul will continue its focus on milk and milk-based products, with most foods at least including it as an ingredient.
Amul dates back 75 years and was originally focused only on milk, cheese and butter, although it has over time expanded its offerings.
Sweets are a major part of its current business and could grow further, with the company reportedly set to open a number of new plants to produce sweets.
Amul’s greater focus on frozen foods comes as Sial Paris Newsroom reported that the frozen food sector in India is set to triple in size over the next five years.
A recent report from Research and Markets forecasts 19% annual growth will mean India’s frozen sector will be worth $3.1 billion (€2.6bn) in 2026, compared to $1.1bn (€950 million) in 2020.