[sbinews] Vegetables to be branded

  • From: sbistcbangalore@xxxxxxxx
  • To: sbinews@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Sat, 13 Dec 2003 07:52:25 +0500

Now, vegetables that come branded

MUMBAI: It could well be the stirring of a greens revolution. The veggies you 
consume day after day may not exactly be picked out of your backyard, but if 
you’re chained to a time-consuming food routine that includes endless trips to 
your neighbourhood sabziwallah, there’s a surprise waiting outside your front 

Look out for a packet, with a tag attached: you’ll find the same old beans, 
with a new name. The best part is, you’re not paying any more for them, and 
they’re probably strung, too. The makers of your favourite soap and tea have 
now ventured into branded vegetables. 

Leading consumer goods companies such as HLL and Godrej have begun branding 
vegetables and selling them through their own channels — retail counters and 
home delivery. 

HLL will offer branded vegetables from its retail outlet Sangam from January 
‘04 while Godrej Agrovet has been working on a pilot project in Thane since 
December ‘03. 

The Kamat Group has already set up its retail operations in Thane and is all 
set to offer its products through franchisees in Mumbai next month. 
While Godrej Agrovet brands its vegetables ‘Fresh N Clean’, the Kamats call it 
‘Farm Foods’. Godrej Agrovet has opened three pilot counters in Thane, and is 
selling vegetables on par with market rates. Market sources said Godrej has 
struck barter deals with farmers in Pune and Nashik, and supplies pesticides 
and fertilisers, in lieu of fresh vegetables. 

If vegetables are not available with their farmers, it sources them from the 
Agriculture Produce Marketing Committee (APMC) in Vashi. 

The organised players will take on the existing unbranded players, who have 
been offering similar services for some time now. 

There’s not much of a price differential in vegetable branding, with the only 
competitive edge being the customer base that players have access to. Industry 
sources say the players religiously follow moving price trends in the market. 
While Godrej, for instance, offers tomatoes at around Rs 12 per kg, the Kamats 
offer it at Rs 10 a kg. Carrots cost much the same: around Rs 14-15 per kg. 

The branded players have their target clearly set out: the urban market, 
particularly working couples who don’t find the time to go out shopping for 
their daily needs. “We have identified the need for offering convenience and 
quality products in the urban markets, especially for office-goers, who have a 
major time constraint. It is also for those who are unable to trudge down to 
the local market everyday for their daily requirements,” said a senior HLL 

“Currently, we run three counters in Thane’s posh locality of Pokhran Road No 
2. The counter that operates in front of Eden Woods accounts for a daily sale 
of Rs 3,000. We plan to roll out the service in Mumbai from January,” says a 
senior Godrej Agrovet official. 

Thane is where HLL’s Sangam started operations over a year ago. HLL already 
offers onions and potatoes through Sangam. The USP is simple: “Fresh, clean, 
correct weight, nutrition and great value for money.” 

“The vegetables are absolutely fresh as they are picked daily and delivered 
fresh every day. These are cleaned and graded to ensure consistency in quality. 
We offer value for money as they are delivered fresh, right at your doorstep,” 
says the Godrej official. 

Kamat Farm Foods, on the other hand, has two schemes for customers, to ensure 
regular supply of vegetables every month. “These two different packages are 
sold for Rs 750 and Rs 500. We supply 65 types of vegetables, and the package 
could also be tailor-made to suit customers’ tastes,” says an official. 

Kamat Farm Foods MD, RN Kamat, said he was sourcing vegetables from farmers in 
Nashik and Igatpuri, and also from the Nashik market. “We are commencing 
similar services in Chembur and Bandra early next year through franchisees,” 
says Mr Kamat. He claims the strategy is vastly different from that of HLL and 
Godrej as they provide, “clean, assorted, cut and packed” vegetables at 

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