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‘Put taste to health’ — say nutrition and health experts at FGFI 2012

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The second day at the Forum India 2012 saw food retailers talking about the potential in health and wellness food categories in a session titled “Opportunity for Nutrition, Wellness, Fitness, Organic and Health Related Products in Modern Retail.”

Eminent panelists Rehan Khan, General Manager and Country Head, Abott Nutrition International (India); Ayan Ghosh, General Manager, ; , MD, Godrej ; T Rajan, MD, Fresh N Natural Foods India; Sankar Narayan, Category Head- Food and Beverages, Food Bazaar; Siddharth Wadia, Business Unit Head-Trade, Abott Nutrition International (India); Vikas Bansi, National Sales Manager-Modern Trade and CSD, Abott Nutrition International (India); and Jaspinder Singh Vohra, Divisional Sales Manager-Key accounts, Kellogg’s threw light on the future of health and wellness food products in India and discussed ways to make it a hit in the Indian market.

According to Khan, the business of nutraceuticals is pegged at Rs 6,000 crore and growing at 20 percent. Talking about the key factors driving the demand of nutrient-enriched food, he stressed on increased awareness of health products among consumers, increased burden of diseases, and higher disposable incomes to be the key reasons behind the rise in sales for this segment. “With 37 percent of consumers shopping from large-format retail stores, modern food retail will double from Rs 315, 000 crore to 675,000 crore by 2025. Not only physical retail stores, but online retail too is growing at 50 percent and has a huge potential,” added Khan.

Talking about the future of health-related products, Khattar said: “The word health has innumerous meanings. Be it a teenager or an elderly, the concept of health and healthy food varies vastly. So, first we need to educate the consumers as to what healthy, nutrient, and wellness-products are and what they offer.” Adding more to this, Vohra said that consumers can be educated and made aware of health products through advertisements and so brands should invest more on marketing strategies.

With health and wellness food products trying to occupy a major space in large-format stores in India, panelists discussed ways to create more awareness among consumers that would lead to good sales. “Make your products innovative and talk more about the benefits. In order to drive penetration in the market, brands need to know about the right product placement in retail stores and clearly be focused on their target group,” said Ghosh. Narayan later added that inclusion of sampling counters in the stores for such health-related products will also play a key role in bringing up sales for the category.

-Tista Sengupta