As part of expanding its plastic packaging business, food and beverage player Parle Agro, is planning to expand its Polyethylene Terephthalate (PET) business by increasing its production capacity by another 21 per cent in the next fiscal. The company has increased its annual preform production by 17 per cent in FY 2009-10.
Known for brands like Frooti and Appy Classic, Parle Agro diversified into production of PET preforms (semi-finished bottles) in 1996. PET (Polyethylene Terephthalate) is a strong, lightweight packaging material that keeps bottled content fresh for up to six months. Parle Agro's PET division supplies preforms to customers in the bottled water, ready-to-drink beverages, carbonated drinks, edible oil, confectionery and pharmaceutical segments. Its product range in terms of neck type are 30/25 mm (water application); PCO neck (carbonated & juice application) and short neck (water application).
Outlining growth segments for the PET business, Schauna Chauhan, CEO, Parle Agro, said, "We plan to increase our presence within the oil, confectionery and pharmaceutical segments while also reaching out to new customers in the liquor segment. The liquor segment is witnessing a shift from glass to PET and we have already started R&D to expand our range of preforms and technology. We recently started manufacturing wide mouth jars in addition to preforms, to cater to the confectionery packaging segment."
The company recently installed two new machines — a KM 96 cavity machine and a Husky - HyPET 72 cavity machine at its Silvassa plant, in the Indian Union Territory of Dadra and Nagar Haveli.
The company has commissioned its second preform manufacturing plant in Orissa and plans to set up its third plant in South India by early 2011.
Only 40 per cent of the total production volume is used for captive consumption, while a majority 60 per cent is supplied to external customers in India and exported abroad to Sout East Asia and Africa.