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Apr, 06 2017

The Cold War

Growing incomes, changing tastes and improving infrastructure are boosting the ice cream industry

India’s appetite for ice cream is on the rise. Growing in­comes and changing tastes are boosting the growth of the ice cream industry. The industry in India generated revenue of more than $1.5 billion last year and is expected to more than double to generate $3.4 billion by 2021, ac­cording to TechSci Research.

Indian v/s Global Brands

With the increasing demand for the premium brands in India, there is a big market for both the traditional ice creams as well as the modern gelato brands. Consumers are no longer satisfied with the typical vanilla cone and are demanding new flavours, tasty toppings and innova­tive ways of serving the ice cream. Due to this, many national players are launching modern gelato ice creams. But Srinivas Kamath, Direc­tor, Kamaths Ourtimes Ice cream (Natural Ice Cream), believed, “Tra­ditional ice cream never goes out of fashion. It is always preferred over gelato brands as it is according to the Indian tastes.”

Till a decade back, the ice cream sector was dominated by the global brands, but now the Indian brands are leading the bandwagon in ice cream retailing. There can be a lot of factors for this change. Kamath added, “National players under­stand the local preferences and taste of people unlike the global brands. Another factor, which plays an important role, is the price. Ice creams flavours launched by Indian brands are comparatively 30-40 per cent cheaper.”

On the same lines, Nitin Arora, CEO, Creambell Ice Cream, said, “We believe in delighting our consumers with the widest range of ice cream and surprising them from time to time with innova­tive combinations.” Globally, the demand for stick-less extruded ice cream products is growing fast. Therefore, the company intro­duced India’s first stick-less ice cream Chokerz.

Franchising Adding Sweetness

Major players like Kwality Walls, Amul, Creambell Ice Cream, Baskin Robbins, and Natural Ice Cream are expanding their businesses via fran­chising. Kamath believed: “Fran­chising is the best way to expand. Till now we have 123 outlets pan-India, out of which 117 are franchised. In franchis­ing, we get to rely on the expertise of local entrepreneurs on understanding the pref­erences of the local people.” In words of Mohit Khattar, CEO, Graviss Foods-Baskin Robbins, “We are currently operating over 700 exclusive parlours across 140 cities in India. We are also growing our distribution network for impulse products across modern trade and general trade outlets.

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