Juicy Colas

By: | Published: January 19, 2016 1:05 AM

Hard to implement plan, but expect more fruit-based drinks

It’s a juicy story that’s become a bit too difficult to blend in. Prime Minister Narendra Modi, at the Start-up India event, sought a 2% addition of fruit juices in aerated drinks. This is not the first time that PM Modi has made such a suggestion. He sees that as a means to increase the revenues of Indian fruit farmers. While the idea is noble, the problem lies in its implementation. For starters, it is not possible to blend fruit juices into existing soft drinks. Since no soft drink company will tamper with their global formula, we shouldn’t expect fruit-based colas anyway. So, expect a new line of fruit-juice-based drinks—lime and orange—to be introduced during the next few months.

However, the problem is that it is unlikely to lead to increased sourcing from Indian farmers in the immediate future. That’s because these fruit drinks use variants of fruit that are either currently not available in the country or use fruits that are still not grown here. This is yet another issue that makers of aerated drinks are facing. After all, while sales spurt in the summers, the brands have over the past few years been buffeted by rising opposition from users. That could lead to lower sales. Hopefully, the fruit drinks will give them the needed punch in the future.

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