ITC Foods Sets 2007 Date With Profit

Kolkata, July 30: | Updated: Jul 31 2003, 05:30am hrs
ITC Ltds foods division expects to achieve a turnover of Rs 500 crore within the next four years, according to Mr Ravi Naware, the chief executive of the unit.

Out of the Rs 500 crore, the biscuits business should contribute around Rs 200 crore, Mr Naware said here on Wednesday. He was addressing a press conference at the launch of the Sunfeast brand of biscuits.

He said the food division is yet to reap a profit, since it is one of ITCs recent forays. We expect the division to earn profit by the same time when it will achieve the Rs 500-crore turnover, Mr Naware said

He said that ITC expects to capture around 11 per cent share in the biscuits market within the next 3 years. This will put us in the 3rd position in the biscuits market, he said.

According to him, the current size of the Indian biscuits market is around Rs 4,500 crore, out of which the size of the organised sector is Rs 2,700 crore. In terms of volumes, Mr Naware said, the total production of biscuits in India currently stands at around eight lakh tonnes out of which 4.5 lakh tonnes come from the organised sector.

There has been a tremendous growth in the biscuits market during the last couple of years specially in 2002-03, when the market grew by around 12 per cent. This overall market growth has prompted ITC to venture in the field in a big way, he said.

He said that ITC expects maximum sale of biscuits in west India which will cater to around 29 per cent of the companys total biscuits sales. The share of east and south will be somewhat similar at around 23 per cent, he said.

He said that currently ITC has two contract manufacturing units - at Burdwan in West Bengal and Nagpur in Maharashtra. The management, he said, is considering opening two such additional contract manufacturing units one in north and the other in South India. This will help us in minimising the logistics cost and will also enable us to provide fresh biscuits all over the country, Mr Naware said.

He said that the current capacity of the Burdwan unit is 700 tonnes a month. However, he ruled, out the possibility for ITC opening its own manufacturing unit.

We will restrict ourselves in training the people in the contract manufacturing units, so that there is a consistent quality production, he said.