The Indian packaged food industry looks likely to reach $30 billion by 2015, according to the Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry of India (ASSOCHAM). The current compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 15-20% annually should see the $15 billion industry reach $30 billion in the next three years.
ASSOCHAM attributes the growth to the arrival of food multinationals, rising popularity of quick-service restaurants, modern retail trade, technological advancement and changing urban lifestyles, among other factors.
Major players in the Indian packaged food field are: Hindustan Unilever, producing tea, instant coffee, biscuits, pulses and instant beverages; Nestlé, producing instant coffee, milk and milk products and ready-to-eat foods; PepsiCo, with aerated drinks, fruit juices, cereals and snacks; and Haldirams, producers of sweets, namkeens, syrups, crushes and other products.
The food ingredients market is also increasing rapidly, according to DS Rawat, ASSOCHAM Secretary General. He added, “consumers are becoming more sophisticated and want more upscale flavours and ingredients.”
There is a large urban-rural divide, with urban residents consuming 78% of all packaged food in 2011 and rural residents consuming just over 22%.
ASSOCHAM’s paper also highlights the growing awareness among Indian consumers of healthy lifestyle choices and functional ingredients.