Snapshots of Food Industry News
Walmart to open Half a Dozen More stores in Uttar Pradesh
US retailer Walmart will soon open six more stores in Uttar Pradesh to add to the existing four stores, two in Agra and one each in Meerut and Lucknow. Walmart sees Uttar Pradesh as a priority growth region and their expansion in this region will lend support to kiranas, small farmers and local suppliers and see them become successful. Walmart has recently launched their first B2B Fulfilment Centre here — the first in Uttar Pradesh and the second in the country after Mumbai and the third centre is likely to come up at Hyderabad.
“The Fulfilment Centre will cater to the business needs of under-served small businesses such as kiranas (re-sellers), offices and institutions, and hotels, restaurants and caterers. Walmart stores and fulfilment centre will contribute to local and state economy by creating thousands of job opportunities at the local level, besides giving a boost to the SME sector and the farmers. Walmart is planning to also up its ‘Best Price’ stores at Kanpur, Moradabad, Varanasi, Gorakhpur, Sharanpur, Lucknow and Ghaziabad.
PepsiCo India to Reduce Salt in Snacks and Pilot Plant-Based Packaging
As part of its healthier food offerings, PepsiCo India is likely to reduce the salt content in almost 75 percent of its snack portfolio by 2025. PepsiCo has already reduced sodium in popular snack brands like Lay’s and Kurkure by 5 to 25 percent and are likely to reduce sodium content across all of their other brands. The upgraded variants of Lay’s and Kurkure snacks in different flavours with reduced sodium have already been introduced in the market. The other snacks in its portfolio include Lehar, Cheetos and Uncle Chipps.
PepsiCo is working with partners to support and leverage new technologies for sustainable packaging solutions in keeping with its ‘performance with purpose goals 2025’. PepsiCo is also working to reduce the impact of its packaging on environment and increase recycling of plastic waste. As a first step the company is resizing of packaging for Lay’s and Kurkure so as to reduce the carbon footprint. In addition the company is working on a sustainable packaging solution pilot in India where packaging will be 100 percent compostable and plant-based for its popular snacks Lay’s and Kurkure from this year starting Q4. India will be among the first countries to pilot this packaging.
Parle Products Unveils Nutricrunch Digestive Cookie Range
Biscuit maker Parle Products, recently launched Nutricrunch, under its Platina Division. The Platina division consolidates all premium offerings from the house of Parle, such as Hide and Seek, Milano, Mexitos and now Nutricrunch, into one division. Inspired by the growing demand for healthy snacking options the healthy range comprises four variants – Nutricrunch Digestive, Nutricrunch Honey and Oats, Nutricrunch Digestive Marie and Nutricrunch Lite Cracker. The digestive cookie range is priced at Rs.20 per 100g pack. Parle Platina’s Nutricrunch range of biscuits has the finest wholesome ingredients and the goodness of natural produce. Nutricrunch Digestive is one of the only biscuit ranges in India that is enriched with jowar, a super food that offers multiple health benefits like high fibre content, high antioxidant count and diabetes management.
Parle has introduced the Nutricrunch range after extensive research and has displayed the unique health benefits in each of the variants on its packaging. This is to ensure that consumers have easy access to the information they often seek while buying healthy foods.
Nutricrunch offers consumers a healthy snack that is not just high in fibre, but also addresses multiple lifestyle issues like weight management, sugar control, cholesterol management and nutrient deficiency. Parle has the reputation of being an innovator and rightly so as they have introduced iconic brands like Monaco, KrackJack, Hide and Seek, Milano, Mango Bite and Melody in the biscuit and confectionery space.
SmartQ Acquires Goodbox’s Digital Cafeteria Business
In an effort to scale up its expansion plans, Bengaluru based food tech start-up SmartQ has announced the acquisition of the Digital Cafeteria business of Goodbox, which provides mini apps to businesses. The acquisition is a part of the company’s long term strategy to increase its footprint across India. SmartQ enhances cafeteria and food-court experience by eliminating queues, minimizing wait time and increasing collaborative work time as corporate employees can place their orders through multiple means. SmartQ clocked more than one crore transactions in the previous year and has over 1, 20,000 daily transactions, SmartQ has a presence in over 100 locations in India and globally.
SmartQ is seeing the acquisition as an important landmark as it reinstates their position as a leader in the Digital Cafeteria Business. Goodbox already has an existing customer base of more than 10 MNCs across the country. Post the acquisition, Goodbox will continue its current focus on the hyper-local delivery business for groceries, pharmacies, etc. and SmartQ will further strengthen their digital cafeteria business by adding Goodbox’s customer base to their portfolio. To take the organization to the next level of strategic growth, they will scale up their product portfolio, service offerings and business strategy.
Original Ice Cream raises Rs.3 Crore Funding from Maverick Group
Delhi-based start-up Original Ice Creams has raised Rs.3 crore in equity funding from Maverick group for a 30 percent stake in the company. Original Ice Cream presently has three outlets that are already operational and have been able to break even in the first month itself. They plan to open 30 more outlets in the NCR region by 2019-20. Original Ice Creams will also be investing funds in brand building for demonstrated growth in the industry. They will also use the funding to finance expansion for retail distribution in other cities in northern India, including Lucknow, Jaipur and Chandigarh.