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Danone goes slow on dairy plan

business Updated: Sep 04, 2011 22:48 IST
Rachit Vats
Rachit Vats
Hindustan Times
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French food giant Danone, which owns fresh dairy brands such as Cremix and Danette, which so far has a limited presence across four Indian cities, says it's going 'slow and steady' on increasing it presence in the fresh dairy segment.

Post its split with Britannia, the firm decided to go solo and in the last eighteen months established presence in, Pune, Bangalore and Hyderabad. In India, where per capita consumption for yoghurt is much lower compared to other mature markets, the challenge for $20 billion-food firm is not only to get consumers try its products but also eventually stick to the brand where it has competition from already established brands such as Nestle, Britannia, Amul and others.

"We are a company focused on fresh dairy, especially yogurt," said Jochen Ebert, MD, Danone India. "We are not massively present in India and it's an obvious opportunity. Depending upon the success in the four cities we are currently present in, we'll move forward. At this stage we are properly analyzing the market."

The opportunity might be massive as Danone claims it is banking on 1.2 billion Indian consumers to help drive its dairy business, the firm's presence in India is restricted and Danone plans to keep it that way for a while.

Danone in India has collaboration with Dynamix as its manufacturing partner. The company is focusing on increasing its fresh dairy product line-up targeting consumers in SEC A, B. The latest addition to its portfolio is Cremix - a creamy yoghurt.

Danone recently made a Rs 1600 crore Wockhard acquisition to kick start its nutrition business. The company did not say any acquisition plans for fresh dairy.