“We are expanding in Tier-II and Tier-III cities. We are present in 68 cities across the country now and in the next 2-3 years, we are targeting to cover 100 cities. Three years back, the Tier-II and Tier-III cities accounted for 25 per cent of our total business but today the smaller cities contribute 46 per cent”, said Arabind Das, chief operating officer, GTFL, a 49:51 joint venture between Godrej Agrovet Ltd and US-based Tyson Foods Inc.
The market size of the frozen food industry in the country is estimated at $300 million (or Rs 1860 crore approximately). GTFL is the market leader with a share of 30 per cent.
“The Ready to Eat and Ready to Cook food categories are logging a year-on-year growth of 25 per cent and we are growing at a higher rate than the industry average”, Das said.
The consumption of frozen food products is expected to grow further with India projected as the fifth largest consumer market by 2015. The key drivers of growth are increasing pace of urbanisation, growing percentage of working women, higher average commuting time and rising preference of people to dine outdoors.
The challenge to growth lies in creating the last mile cold chain infrastructure, Das said.“Most of the outlets selling frozen foods lack the suitable freezers where ready to cook food can be stored. We intend to invest Rs 8-10 crore on freezers for that last mile cold chain infrastructure”, he added.