Spices Brand Promotion For US Gets Under Way

Kochi, December 22: | Updated: Dec 23 2002, 05:30am hrs
The Initiative of Spices Board to promote Indian spice brands in the US has taken off with consultant Accenture holding discussions with leading Indian companies. However, a similar study by KPMG for brand promotion in Japan is yet to begin as funds are awaited from the Centre, sources at Spice Board said.

Last month, Accenture had bagged the contract piping five companies for studying the prospects in US market. Accordingly, discussions were held with major spice product producers like Synthite, Cancor, Tatas and Lipids. A meeting with the exporters is to be held next week while formal discussions with US importers is expected to be held in January.

However, the Japan market study is yet to begin allegedly owing to a lack of funds. Though the amount allotted was Rs 50 lakh, the amount quoted by KPMG was slightly high. The board is in talks with the Centre and hoped that additional amount for this venture would be granted soon.

There is also a proposal to set aside part of the Plan allocation for this which needed the Centres nod.

The US and Japanese markets are seen as important destinations for spices export. Though the volume and value of imports of spices to these two markets from various countries were known, the absolute size of the market value of the spice business was not known. Also, it would be an attempt of the board to promote the brands beyond the ethnic Indian population in these countries.

The consultants have to collect, collate and catalogue data like the total market size based on volume, value and type, look into the nature of value-addition, legislative provisions, taxes and duties, trade barriers and trade channels.

The consultants will have to project the likely trade volumes, identify the spice products, requirements regarding packaging, labelling and food safety and appropriate pricing strategy.

As per the schedule, the consultants have been given specific time frames for each activity and are expected to complete their study in 12 months.