Publication: Economic Times
Edition: New Delhi(15.01.2015)

MUMBAI: The market size for food in India, which was at Rs 23 lakh crore in 2014, is set to reach Rs 42 lakh crore by 2020, Boston Consulting Group said today.

"India's food market size which is at around Rs 23 trillion in 2014 is set to reach around Rs 42 trillion by 2020, along with a three-time increase in average household income from 2010-2020," Boston Consulting Group (BCG) Principal Rohit Ramesh said at the India Food Forum 2015 here.

Premium chocolates are gaining share just like premium biscuits, as structural income is supporting the consumption. With rising urbanisation, Indian food market constitutes 41 per cent of fresh perishable dairy, 34 per cent staples and 15 per cent on beverages and foods, Ramesh said.

Unlike China, which underwent a dramatic diet change, Indian food habits are seen to be changing gradually, with proportional increase seen in both fresh dairy products as well as protein foods, since food expenditure is perceived second only to health expenditure in India.

Participating in a panel discussion, Food Bazaar CEO Devendra Chawla said, "Customers are evolving faster than ever before as they continue to consume multi-grain, multi-vitamin and low-diet foods".

While supermarkets aided Indian housewives, retail trends indicate that convenience is gaining premium while health and hygiene have gained prominence in the food segment, he said.

Among emerging trends, Chawla said that while the nuclear family has boosted food retail, the rising singles population has increased pet population and thereby increasing consumption of pet food.

India must revisit its food standards if it is serious about addressing malnourishment and also get its act together to ensure the success of 'Make In India' campaign, experts said.

"Many Quick Service Restaurant companies are keen to enter India but want to ensure audit of their suppliers here. However, there is a dilemma with respect to harmonisation of these standards," certification body NSF International Regional Audit Manager Jitendra Nautiyal said.

"Food safety norms need to be evolved if Indian trade has to grow. For pan masala, you only need to add that it is injurious to health, while the Indian regulator insists that Scotch must have 'best before' date on its label," TFS Corporate Solutions Executive Director (Food Safety) Ujjwal Kumar said.


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