Amul’s camel milk launch was expected, it will actually help us: Aadvik Foods INTERVIEW

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Updated: Jul 25, 2019 5:39 PM

Bikaner-based Aadvik Foods said it had expected Amul’s entry in the segment with the Gujarat-based co-operative toying the idea of launching camel milk for some time now.

Another milk price hike on cardsAadvik Foods seems to be unfazed by the entry of the much bigger competitor Amul. Image: Reuters

While Amul, the leading dairy brand in India’s milk market, has recently forayed into camel milk segment, Aadvik Foods has been in the game for three years now, claiming to be the first company in the country to venture into selling camel milk. However, Aadvik Foods seems to be unfazed by the entry of the much bigger competitor. Bikaner-based Aadvik Foods said it had expected Amul’s entry in the segment with the Gujarat-based co-operative toying the idea of launching camel milk for some time now.

“Sooner or later, we were expecting Amul to venture in the field of camel milk; their presence further validates the whole Camel milk market in the country,” Shrey Kumar, co-founder, Aadvik Foods, told Financial Express Online. He also said that Amul and Aadvik are serving two different need-based users and targeting different segment altogether. Aadvik Foods has sold about 2 lakh litres of camel milk to date.

What’s up with the sudden rage?

With Camel milk getting a formal recognition from India’s food safety regulator FSSAI, this has made it easier for other FMCG brands to enter into this segment, Shrey Kumar said on Amul’s entry in the segment. “(the) User is becoming more and more conscious of health, and brands are exploring newer and healthier products… what could be healthier than Camel Milk — it is good for diabetes, autism, height growth, lactose intolerance, etc,” he added. Camel milk market in India will grow by 5%, Shrey Kumar said, adding that the slow growth of the category so far was due to low awareness about camel milk and its benefits.

Earlier, last week, Amul announced the launch of Camel Milk in 500 ml and 200 ml PET bottle which will be retailed for Rs 50 and Rs 25 respectively. Aadvik Foods, on the other hand, sells various products derived from camel milk, such as chocolate, body butter and dried milk powder. 

Challenges faced by Camel milk industry

Apart from procurement issues, Camel milk sellers also face the challenge of high cost and setting up cold chain logistics for camel milk compared to normal cow/buffalo milk, Shrey Kumar told Financial Express Online. “Camel herds generally move their location in search of food. We cannot have a single collection centre throughout and special care needs to be taken while transporting the same. Due to hot regions, chances of milk getting spoiled soon is also very high,” he added.

Also, unlike cow and buffalo milk where it is mixed with any type of milk, the collection for camel milk has to be very selective and specific. “Camels have not been reared for commercial milk production, which makes milking relatively a difficult task. Further, the milk yield and lactation period are low and high respectively in Camels when compared to other bovines,” he said.

Aadvik Foods is currently focusing on the need-based user who require camel milk it in the purest form possible, in the form of frozen camel milk or freeze-dried camel milk powder. On the contrary, “we believe Amul is targeting a different segment altogether,” Shrey Kumar said.

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