Taking Brand Amul everywhere: 15 new plants, F&B push this year
In a few years from on, consumers may find Amul, India’s largest dairy brand, in almost every food and beverage category, from pulses to atta, sugar, tea, rice, jaggery, fruit drinks, frozen products, bakery, fruit drinks and protein products.
The Rs 72,000-crore Amul group, which comprises 18 member unions, has an aggressive diversification plan into non-dairy categories, an initiative which began in a small way in FY23, but will be given a big push in FY24 and beyond, Jayen Mehta, MD, Gujarat Co-operative Milk Marketing Federation (GCMMF), which markets the Amul brand, told Fe.
At the same time, the co-operative, which currently has 98 processing plants across the country, will add another 15 new units in FY24, taking its total count to 113.
The aim, bring Brand Amul as close to consumers and suppliers (dairy farmers) as possible, tapping into the shift from unbranded to branded products. From a revenue perspective, GCMMF hopes to add another Rs 8,000-Rs 10,000 crore to Amul’s Rs 72,000-crore topline. Mehta sees growth rates at a steady 12-14% per annum over the next few years, helping the co-operative achieve Rs 1 trillion by FY26.
“Post-Covid-19, the movement from loose to packaged, unbranded to branded products has been high. This gives us a huge runway for growth, given that we have positioned ourselves as a brand for the masses, ” Mehta said.
Among new product launches lined up this year include high-protein yogurts, milk shakes, probiotic chocolates ice-creams and curd, as well as a new range of Indian sweets and bakery products.
Mehta says that GCMMF has already converted its entire range of buttermilk pouches – over 30 lakh litres produced across its dairy plants every day – into probiotic buttermilk. “This has come at no extra cost and is also healthy for the gut,” he says.
More good-for-you products are on the anvil such as protein-based buttermilk, lassi, yoghurt and cheese, aimed at filling the nutritional gaps of consumers. From a business perspective, GCMMF hopes to add around Rs 8,000-10,000 crore in terms of turnover from new initiatives alone over the next few years.
For now, GCMMF reported a 20% growth in fresh milk products in FY23 over the previous year. This segment contributes 50% to its turnover. Staples such as butter, ghee, cheese etc give GCMMF another 35% of its turnover, while impulse categories such as ice-creams and beverages contribute the balance 15% to topline.
While impulse categories such as ice-creams and beverages had a weak start in FY24 thanks to uncertain weather conditions during the summer season, an early onset of heat in August and a buildup in September and October is expected to help offtake of impulse categories in the months ahead, Mehta says.
Fresh milk products and staples are also expected to remain stable this year given that there have been no procurement shortfalls so far and price lines have been intact after an 8-10% hike earlier this year in packet milk (increased by Rs 2 a litre).
GCMMF currently has an installed capacity of 470 lakh litres per day across its 98 processing plants. It collects milk (from over 36 lakh farmers) on an average of 300 lakh litres per day, Mehta said, will plans to expand capacity by 30-40 lakh litres per day in the next two years, as existing categories as well as new initiatives gather pace.