With the aim to make its products accessible to people at the bottom of the pyramid, PepsiCo India is set to introduce a range of low-priced fortified products to address micro-nutrient deficiency in India. The company will finalise the product by the first quarter of next year.
“It could be either a beverage or a snack-food product.” said Sanjeev Chaddha, chairman, PepsiCo India, refusing to share the investment for the initiative.
Keeping in mind affordability, the company is evaluating price points as low as Re 1 to Rs 5. “We are at present evaluating a sustainable model to achieve the same,” Chaddha added.
Apart from identifying micro-nutrient deficiencies that need immediate attention, the company is carrying out research on making the products tasty and fun. “The consumer does not only want nutritious products but also something tasty, affordable and fun to have,” Chaddha said.
The initiative will especially address the nutrient needs of adolescents and pregnant women. PepsiCo will also invest significantly in developing the market infrastructure for the launch.
Studies of absorption levels of various nutrients and how they can be added in snacks or beverages without affecting their shelf life are also being conducted.
The initiative is in line with PepsiCo’s aim to increase the share of healthy products in its portfolio to 50 per cent from the present level of 30 per cent. This was announced by PepsiCo Chairperson and CEO Indra Nooyi on her recent visit to India.
The company is also scouting for alliances to bring in technology to build a sustainable model for the proposed fortified range. “Besides working with the government for the project, we are looking at the private sector and NGOs to help us bring in the right technology and work out the specifics,” Chaddha said.
PepsiCo recently announced an investment of $500 million in its India operations over the next three years as part of an initiative to treble its revenue in the next five years.
The investment will be for manufacturing capacity, market infrastructure, environment sustainability initiatives, R&D and agriculture. The new investment will aim to generate 50,000 direct and indirect jobs in India. PepsiCo has invested $700 million since its entry into the country in 1989, employing 4,000 people directly and about 60,000 others indirectly.
6 months ago