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Britannia invests Rs 200 crore in R&D centre and mfg plant in Bidadi
Thursday, 24 November, 2016, 08 : 00 AM [IST]
Our Bureau, Bengaluru
Britannia Industries Limited has invested Rs 200 crore in its state-of-the-art research and development (R&D) centre and manufacturing plant in Bidadi, near Bengaluru. The 55,000sq ft centre and the plant are the the company’s first owned facilities in Karnataka. The company will focus on fostering innovations and develop disruptive products for Indian and global consumers.
The centre, inaugurated by Karnataka’s industries minister R V Deshpande, houses analytical, sensory and microbiology labs and pilot plants for its core product portfolio, which includes biscuits, cakes, rusks, breads and dairy products (including cheese, beverages, milk and yoghurt). It is manned by a team of food technologists, scientists, chefs and nutritionists. Nearly half the workforce comprises women.
“Our market leadership in bakery today is firm and growing. As a market leader, innovation is the bedrock of our identity. We aim to be a total food company five years from now, serving over a billion Indians four times a day,” said Varun Berry, managing director, Britannia Industries Limited.
“This centre reinforces our commitment to deliver innovative and superior products to our consumers. It will act as a springboard to accelerate product innovations in newer categories and will help us in our growth into adjacent bakery segments within macro-snacking,” he added.
The manufacturing facility in Bidadi, built adjacent to the R&D centre, is also equipped with high-speed processing machinery that redefines the frontiers of food technology in India. It will seamlessly channel the innovations from the R&D centre to markets across the country. Currently, the facility employs over 800 people and the workforce will expand to 1,350 people when it reaches 100 per cent capacity.
“The rigour and commitment behind product innovations which deliver new-to-market experiences is testimony to our promise of taste, trust and consistent delivered quality,” said Sudhir Nema, vice-president, R&D and quality, Britannia Industries Ltd.
“The new facility will steer us to the next phase of growth by delivering disruptive innovations, renovating the core product portfolio and providing value engineering to remain cost competitive,” he added.
The Rs 8,500-crore company set up its R&D centre in 1970 in Mumbai. The new centre in Karnataka will be a consolidated facility that houses state-of-the-art capabilities in analytical excellence laboratory (microbiology and organoleptics), product development, packaging development, scientific regulatory affairs, nutrition, R&D excellence and capability building (culinary laboratory) and dairy development.
Britannia’s brands like Good Day, Tiger, NutriChoice, Milk Bikis and Marie Gold are household names in India. Its products are available across over four million retail outlets and reach over 50 per cent of Indian homes.
The company’s dairy business contributes close to 10 per cent of its revenue. These products are available at 7,00,000 outlets and over three million outlets through indirect distribution.
Britannia is the largest brand in the organised bread market, with an annual turnover of 1.1 lakh tonnes in volume and Rs 385 crore in value. Through its 13 factories and five franchisees, it sells around one million loaves daily across 73 locations in India.
The company, which has been driving the Eat Healthy, Think Better campaign, removed over 8,500 tonnes of trans-fats from products and became India’s first zero trans-fat company. Over 50 per cent of its products are enriched with essential micro-nutrients.
In 2009, it set up the Britannia Nutrition Foundation to work with under-privileged, under-nourished children by supplementing their daily meals with an iron and multiple micro- nutrient-fortified products.
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